This Cabernet hails from the world-class Beckstoffer Red Hills Vineyard in the Red Hills district of Lake County, California. Like the sneaky canine it is named for, it snuck into our wine tasting late one night.
Green Dragon and I had dinner at the Revolution Grille in Toledo joined by our friends Glorious T and the Cabinator. I had selected a nice high end bottle of Cab to open when we returned from the restaurant.
Fate had something different in mind. The Cabinator was battling a migraine which was made worse by the festive and raucous crowd that packed the Revolution Grille. For perhaps the first time in recorded history, he had to take a pass on tasting a $100+ bottle of Cabernet.
When Green Dragon and I arrived back at TWAV world headquarters (also known as our house) I decided to shelve the high-end Cab and instead grabbed the 2005 Sly Dog Cellars Cabernet. It turned out to be a superior wine with no “ruff” edges.
This wine had been in my cellar for more than two years and the extra age has added a nice patina of elegance. It took my palate a couple sips to get in sync with the wine, but I soon enjoyed a nice dish of black cherry, raspberry and vanilla flavor firmed up with mellow tannins.
Sly Dog is medium in body and sports a finish that stretches beyond the expected. I’m not sure if this is generally available, but at the price point of about $15 it has great QPR (Quality Price Ratio).
The winery gained its name from a sneaky dog that stole a steak just off the grill. In terms of value and taste, the Sly Dog ‘05 Cab is a steal too.
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Value: 4 of 5
Full Disclosure: We received this wine as a marketing sample.