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Top local cabernet sauvignon wines for the holidays 

cabernet-sauvignon-paso-roblesCabernet sauvignon and Bordeaux-style blends are the big, bold, tannic wines that pair perfectly with holiday meals centered around meats like prime rib, roast beef, pork tenderloin, lamb and venison. Lucky for us, Paso Robles is producing some outstanding cabernets and cab blends. Here is a selection of Paso Robles wines we recommend for your upcoming holiday meals.

Best cabernet sauvignon and Bordeaux-style blends for the holidays

Barton Family Wines 2010 Bordeaux Blend “The Dance” – $45
This blend is 60-percent cab, 30-percent malbec and 10-percent carmenere. It has aromas of blackberry, currants and tobacco. It’s a solid wine that will age well, but would also be great for a holiday meal this year.

Whalebone Vineyards 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon.

Whalebone Vineyards 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon

Derby 2011 Implico – $32
This delightful Bordeaux blend is medium-bodied with 46-percent cab, 27-percent merlot, 13-percent petit verdot, 9-percent malbec and 5-percent cabernet franc. It has a soft mouthfeel with blackberry and black cherry flavors that finishes with a touch of oak.

Eberle 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon – $40
Gary Eberle’s estate cab is practically an institution in Paso Robles. He first planted it in 1979 and it has been his flagship wine ever since. This vintage was aged 18 months in French oak and is full of rich dark fruit flavors. It will pair well with prime rib roast, grilled lamb chops or beef tenderloin.

HammerSky 2010 Party of Four – $59
This tasy blend is 47-percent merlot, 30-percent petit verdot, 12-percent malbec and 11-percent cabernet sauvignon. It has aromas of plum, leather and spice with similar flavors and a touch of earthiness.

Hope Family Wines 2012 Treana Red – $45
Treana Red began in 1996 and has built itself into a heavy weight Paso Robles brand with over 7,000 cases produced. It’s 70-percent cab and 30-percent syrah, making it uniquely a Paso blend. This flagship wine has aromas of red cherry and pomegranate followed by intense flavors of plum and allspice.

Laraneta 2010 Velvet – $30
Laraneta’s tribute to Bordeaux is a blend of merlot and cabernet sauvignon. It has aromas and flavors of black currant jam. It’s a medium-bodied and approachable wine.

Peachy Canyon 2011 Para Siempre – $55
This superb blend is 29-percent petit verdot, 25-percent cab, 18-percent merlot, 16-percent cabernet franc and 12-percent malbec. It has an elegant and velvety mouthfeel with black currant flavors and a touch of minerality from time spent aging in concrete. It was one of our favorites on the list.

Penman Springs 2011 Meritage Artisan Cuvée – $28
It’s 55-percent cab, 30-percent merlot and 15-percent petit verdot. It’s a rich complex wine with aromas and flavors of currant, cedar and plum with a delightful oak finish. It has the best price point of the wines reviewed on this list.

Whalebone Vineyards 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon – $35
Whalebone Vineyards is proving to be one of the best cabernet sauvignon producers in the Paso Robles AVA. Their estate cab is deeply pigmented and packs a punch with zesty dried cherry notes and an extracted boysenberry flavor. It’s a great expression of cooler westside cabernet fruit.

Best Paso Robles wines for the holidays


Editors note: I thought it would be a great idea to recommend local wines for upcoming holiday parties and dinners, but I had no idea how much participation we would receive from wineries. Over the last week we received about 100 entries. I was originally planning a list of 10 or so of the best wines, but after tasting and tasting and tasting, there were just too many solid, well-made wines to recommend. So we decided to break up the list of top local wines into categories. The recommended wines are in alphabetical order.

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About the author: Publisher Scott Brennan

Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Follow him on Twitter, LinkedIn, or follow his blog.