Cabernet Sauvignon

Where do you start with the most-planted wine grape on the planet? At the aristocratic First Growth châteaux of Bordeaux, if you can. Rich, finessed and structured, on their day the wines of châteaux Latour, Lafite, Haut-Brion, Margaux and Mouton Rothschild are peerless, closely followed by top Crus Classés such as Lynch-Bages and the Léovilles. Late ripening and relatively easy to grow, Cabernet Sauvignon has small berries with thick skins, high tannins and good acidity. In southern France it forms part of the blend at cult domaines Trévallon and Daumas Gassac, while in Italy it spearheaded the ‘Super Tuscan’ category with Sassicaia in the 1980s. From California, where Ridge produces Monte Bello – one of our desert-island wines – to South Africa and Australia, there’s no escaping Cabernet Sauvignon’s grip on fine wine.