This is the definition of a Cabernet “steal”
Driving west along the RP86 in Argentina’s Lujan de Cuyo district of Mendoza, rising like a billion-dollar Hollywood set, the real deal snow-capped Andes mountains offer a majestic view. But a two-minute detour off RP86 down a tree-lined dirt road lands you in front of pristinely manicured rows that Owen, an Italian immigrant, planted 87 years ago. Standing amidst these ancient Cabernet vines, already at 3,700+ feet (nearly twice the height of Napa’s tallest peak) with the Andes towering westward makes for a surreal experience. Then comes the wine culled from these grapes — the 2015 Casarena Cabernet Sauvignon Owen’s Vineyard. This wine is vibrant and concentrated with the impeccable flavors and structure only possible from old-vine concentration. But don’t just take it from us. Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate pinned on 94 points, praising its “very good depth” and “perfect ripeness.” If this single-vineyard Cabernet said “Napa” on the label instead of Mendoza, you’d be on the hook for double, if not triple the price.
The heart of Argentina’s burgeoning Cabernet Sauvignon game is smack in Mendoza Valley’s Lujan de Cuyo. Casarena’s been tracing this pulse for over a decade, if not leading the charge. It’s a pursuit propelled by a desire to honor the region’s winemaking traditions, and it’s led them to stunning properties like Owen’s Vineyard, a near-century-old property planted at 3,752 feet above sea level in the village of Agrelo in Mendoza.
Planted in 1930 by an immigrant Italian family, Owen’s Vineyard deploys a pergola trellising system that allows the vines to fully embrace the elevated property’s sunlight and climate. This traditional tactic combines with the land’s clay and loamy soil to produce complex fruit loaded with power and rounded by soft tannins. These traits flourish throughout the 2015 Casarena Cabernet Sauvignon Owen’s Vineyard, creating a ripe, balanced expression of terroir. It’s a must-have for Cabernet Sauvignon aficionados.
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