The under-the-radar Beckmen Vineyards of Santa Barbara has yet again bottled a delicious Cabernet. Flavors of cocoa, sweet wood, pure black and blue fruits and freshly turned earth are skillfully balanced with a soft but distinctive texture and structure. Impressively, the Beckmens produce all of their wine from estate grown fruit. This wine is drinking great now and will continue to do so for at least the next three to four years.
Moving to the reds and one of the top Bordeaux blends coming out of the Santa Ynez Valley, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Santa Ynez Valley offers classic notes of mint, plums, spring flowers and graphite in a full-bodied, richly concentrated and textured package. Despite being a big, rich, concentrated wine, it always stays fresh and lively and has terrific purity of fruit. I actually like it today, but it will no doubt drink nicely for a decade or more.