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What is Cabernet Sauvignon? How to Drink and Serve

What is Cabernet Sauvignon: How to Drink and Serve

 

Delicious, slightly sweet, full bodied, but what is cabernet sauvignon? Sure you’ve had this beloved wine at a restaurant, parties and even at home. And when you are looking to buy wine online, there are important things to consider including taste, look, age, and price. So let’s dig deep into what this beloved wine is all about. We’ll talk about all the important stuff like how to serve and drink, the best Cabs at various prices, and other interesting facts!

 

Where Does Cabernet Sauvignon Come From?

 

The Cab grape is a hybrid grape that is quite versatile. Though it originated in Bordeaux, France, Cabernet Sauvignon is now produced all over the world. The Cabernet Sauvignon  variety was created by an accidental crossing that happened in the 17th century between Cabernet Franc, a deep red grape, and Sauvignon Blanc, a white grape.

Cabernet Sauvignon grapes are grown all around the world. Most notably, Cabs come from Napa Valley California where the climate is warm and hospitable to this late ripening grape. However some really great Cabs come from Washington state, France, Australia, South America and many others. Where Cabernet Sauvignon comes from does play a role in the subtle flavor differences, which takes us into the next part…

Where does cabernet sauvignon come from

Cabernet Sauvignon originated in Bordeaux, France. However, it can now be found in many regions across the world. Most notably, Napa Valley, CA.

 

 

 

What Does Cabernet Sauvignon Taste Like?

Cabernet Sauvignon is a full-bodied dark red wine. Its flavor profile varies widely and can range from notes of black pepper to sweet strawberries. There are over 3,500 varieties of Cab so the flavors of each bottle can be different based on many factors. Cabs can have any of the following flavor:

  • Black currant
  • Tobacco
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Chocolate
  • Truffle 
  • Cedar
  • Coffee 
  • Eucalyptus
  • Boysenberry
  • Pepper
  • Vanilla

According to the Masterclass article, Cabernet Sauvignon tastes like green bell peppers. That flavor comes from pyrazine. This chemical compound is found in the skin of the grape and some varieties have more pyrazine than others so the intensity of this flavor can vary.

So after you take a sip, ask yourself, what does this Cabernet Sauvignon taste like? You should be able to taste a variety of flavors!

 

 

How To Drink Cabernet Sauvignon

You’ve seen people swirl, sniff, sip, swish wine. But what is the proper way to drink Cabernet Sauvignon and truly savor all the flavors? Below we’ll explain the steps to drink Cabs properly according to expert sommeliers.

  1. Take a good look at the wine. Tilt the glass about 40 degrees and check the color and opacity. Some cabs will be darker than others. The opacity will also vary.
  2. Smell the wine. Hold the glass about half an inch away from your nose and take a deep inhale through your nose. What do you smell? It may take a few sniffs to understand all the various scents. What you smell in the wine will also come through what you taste.
  3. Take a small sip. Let it roll around your tongue and then let it sit for a second or two. What are the different notes and flavors you taste? Is it acidic? Sweet? Dry? Do you taste berries? Pepper? Vanilla? There are no right or wrong answers and people will taste different things as all of our taste buds vary.

Now you learned how to drink Cabs!

 

 

How To Serve Cabernet Sauvignon?

We can write an entire article on just how to serve Cabernet Sauvignon, but we’ll try to keep it short and sweet here. The way you serve a Cab can really impact the flavors and notes that come through.

 

First, let’s start with the temperature of the wine. Cabernet Sauvignons are best served between 55 to 65 degrees. This is what’s known as cellar temperature. The best option is to store your wine in a wine fridge but if you don’t have one, the next best thing is to put it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before serving. Also remember to hold the wine glass by the stem as opposed to the bowl so that the wine doesn’t get warm from the heat of your hand.

Second, decant the wine. Do you wonder why your second glass of wine tastes better than the first? It’s not a coincidence. The oxidation process allows the wine to open up and become more lively. If you have a decanter, you should use it if you’re planning to drink the wine shortly after you open it. You should still let wine sit in the decanter for at least 30 minutes before drinking it.

 

However, if you have some time and don’t have a decanter handy, we suggest opening up the bottle and letting time work its magic. Give it about an hour and try it.

 

Third, choose a wine glass that has a wider bowl. Serving Cabernet Sauvignon in a larger bowl gives it more exposure to air thus allowing the flavors to get the full range of aromas. A glass with a larger bowl and a tapered rim works best for a full bodied Cab.

 

Use these methods to really impress your guests with how you serve Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

What Pairs Best With Cabernet Sauvignon?

Wine, if paired right, enhances the flavor of food. However, did you know that food can also enhance the flavor of wine? The acidity and different profiles of the wine interact with food to create new flavors that you wouldn’t otherwise experience with one or the other.

Since Cabernet Sauvignon is a bold, heavy wine, it’s best paired with heavier, richer dishes to complement the food rather than overwhelm it. Here are some dishes that pair great with a Cabernet Sauvignon:

  • Steak
  • Lamb
  • A juice burger
  • Charcuterie
  • Roasted Brussels Sprouts
  • Cheese
  • Portobello mushrooms
  • Dark Chocolate

 

 

What Are The Best Cabernet Sauvignons?

Ok so now you’ve learned all you need to know about serving and drinking Cabernet Sauvignon the right way. But how do you choose the right one? That really depends on several factors; budget being the one of the biggest. Here we’ll suggest our top picks for Cabs at various price points.

 

Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon

Josh Cellars Cabernet SauvignonThis is definitely a fan-favorite. It is full-bodie and rich with flavors of blackberries, roasted hazelnuts and hints of vanilla. This is a wine you can have any night of the week. With such a reasonable price (usually under $20), you don’t need a special occasion to open up a bottle of this fantastic wine.

 

 

Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet SauvignonAny wine loved is familiar with this brilliant wine. With its bold, dark color and flavors of cocoa, cassis, and dark red berries, it tantalizes the tastebuds. This wine is generally price at $100-115 and makes a great gift.

 

Duckhorn Cabernet Sauvignon


Duckhorn 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon – 2019 brought another exceptional vintage to Napa Valley due to favorable weather conditions. This wine is aged 16 months in 100% French Oak barrels. This wine offers enticing aromas of huckleberry jam, black cherry and cinnamon spice making for beautifully rich and complex flavors in the mouth. 

 

Gnarlyhead 1924 Red Blend

 

Gnarly Head Double Black Cabernet Sauvignon Grab this limited edition bottle now, if you can! This wine has won many awards, including the winning the Gold from the Critics Challenge Wine Competition. At just under $15, it goes to show that price isn’t the only factor in determining what makes a great wine. 

 

 

Bonanza Cabernet Sauvignon- 750ml

Bonanza Cabernet Sauvignon From the Caymus family, this more affordable wine boasts flavors of  Blackberry, blueberry, vanilla, and toasted bread. Just under $25/bottle, this is a sophisticated wine at a very reasonable price.

 

 

Buena Vista Cabernet Sauvignon 750ml​​

Buena Vista Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon A fantastic mid-priced Cab. It drinks like a $100 bottle, but half its price. With notes of oak, vanilla, chocolate, and plum, it’s a rich, full-bodied wine with velvety smooth tannins.

 

Leese Fitch Cabernet Sauvignon

Leese Fitch Cabernet SauvignonA great cab for under $13! This wine has a lot of complexity and flavor.  This wine bursts with aromas of sweetened cranberry, cassis, toasted marshmallow, charred dill and roasted red pepper. It’s definitely a heartier wine so enjoy with heavier dishes like a steak or a burger.

 

How Many Calories are in a Bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon?

So we’ve learned how to drink and serve Cabernet Sauvignon. Another question people ask quite often is how many calories are in a bottle of Cab?

There are about 600-615 calories in a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, so about 120 calories per 5oz glass. The number of calories doesn’t vary much from bottle to bottle because most of the calories come from alcohol not sugar or carbs. Actually most cabs have only 3-4 grams of carbs and about 1 gram of sugar. If you are looking for a low sugar wine, there are wines like FitVine Cabernet Sauvignon that have 3.9g of carbs and .06 grams of sugar per 5oz glass.

 

You now have the essential skills to drink and serve Cabernet Sauvignon. Choosing the right bottle for you will depend on your preferences. So we always say to try many different bottles and enjoy the process!

Mezcal Margarita Cocktail

The Best Cinco De Mayo Cocktail Recipes

Cinco De Mayo – one of our favorite holidays. Because what beats a holiday where there’s no judgement for binging on deliciously greasy tacos and tasty tequila cocktails?

 

In honor of this magnificent holiday, we’ve put together a few cinco de mayo cocktail recipes for you to enjoy!

 

So grab a few friends, a few tacos, and mix up some of Sipsy’s favorite libations. And we’re all about convenience, so we’ve packaged all these cocktail recipes into cocktail packs so you don’t have to think about shopping for each ingredient!

 

The Classic Margarita

 

Classic Margarita cocktail recipe

 

Ok, so this classic margarita recipe is really easy – made for those who prefer to spend time drinking than making a drink. Whether you like it blended or on the rocks, either way, this is the easiest margarita you can make:

 

  • 2 oz of 1800 Tequila Blanco
  • 4 oz of Jose Cuervo Margarita Mix

 

Pour over ice or blend ingredients in a blender with ice. Add a slice of lime to garnish.

 

The Spicy Paloma

 

Spicy Paloma Cocktail

 

We love this spicy Paloma cocktail for its balance of heat, sweet and tang. Live a little dangerously, give it a try.

 

  • 2 oz of Espolon tequila blanco
  • 1 oz of Ancho Reyes chile liqueur (add another ounce to kick up the heat)
  • 4 oz of Fever Tree sparkling grapefruit
  • Squeeze of lime

 

Pour ingredients over ice and add jalapeno slices to garnish

 

The Mezcal Margarita

 

Mezcal Margarita Cocktail

 

If you’re looking for something a bit different, perhaps a more “grown up” margarita, this is the cocktail for you. This mezcal margarita recipe uses the simplest ingredients to make a smoky margarita. Really impress your friends with this special Cinco De Mayo Cocktail recipe.

 

  • 2oz of Montelobos Mezcal Espadin
  • 1 oz of agave syrup
  • 1 oz of lime juice 

 

Pour all ingredients into a shaker, shake for 15 seconds. Pour contents from the shaker into a glass filled with ice. Add a lime wheel to garnish

 

The Pink Margarita

 

The Pink Margarita Cocktail

 

For those who have a sweet tooth – we have the perfect margarita for you. The sweetness and tartness mingle so beautifully together, you’ll forget there’s tequila in there!

 

  • 2oz of Exotico Tequila Blanco
  • 1oz of Dekuyper Triple Sec 
  • 1-2 splashes of Rose’s Grenadine
  • Juice from ½ a lime

 

Combine all ingredients in a shaker and add ice. Shake and pour into a salt-rimmed coupe (or champagne) glass. This cocktail keeps it classy on Cinco De Mayo.

 

The Ultimate Margarita

 

The ultimate margarita cocktail

 

Alas…the queen of margaritas – Margarita herself. A margarita made the way margaritas should be made – high quality ingredients combined to make the freshest and tastiest margarita

 

 

Combine all ingredients in a shaker and add ice. Shake and pour into a salt-rimmed ice glass. Garnish with a lime wheel. Indulge in the best classic margarita you’ll ever have.

 

Order these cocktail packs online now on Sipsy and get them delivered to you in as little as 30 minutes. Don’t worry, If you don’t live in our delivery zone, we can ship these packs to you!  Visit our Cinco De Mayo page for awesome deals. Cheers!

Best Seltzers

What Are The Best Hard Seltzers Right Now?

Hard seltzers are the fastest growing alcohol category right now, thanks to White Claw, who has really accelerated the growth of this drink craze. It’s no wonder so many different brands and varieties have popped up on the market over the past couple of years, with every brand vying for your love and attention.

 

While White Claw remains the most popular brand (among the top ordered online). Is it really the best tasting? We set out to discover the answer to this question by conducting our very own blind taste test. Our tasters tried the top 25 selling flavors (based on alcohol delivery sales on sipsy.com), from popular brands like White Claw, and Truly to more boutique brands like Flying Embers. Our 5 tasters ranked these as the top 5 best hard seltzers based on flavor alone:

 

#5 – White Claw Tangerine

This slightly sweet, slightly tangy white claw flavor came in at number 5. The taste testers enjoyed the refreshing taste that wasn’t overwhelmingly citrusy. This flavor comes in the original variety pack so the plus side is you get 3 of the other most popular White Claw flavors in a pack.

 

#4 – Dezo Spiked Watermelon Water

This boutique brand promises healthy ingredients that give you a buzz. And if you’re going to drink, might as well get all the great benefits like antioxidants and vitamins from your beverage. Our tasters loved this almost candy-like flavor. One taster said it reminded her of a watermelon jolly rancher with a hint of cucumber but without the overly sugary taste. This brand also comes in a spiked cactus and spiked coconut flavor. With a 5.5% abv, it has the highest alcohol by volume (abv) out of all the hard seltzers on the market.

#3 – Two Chicks Sparkling Paloma

Our tasters raved about this tequila seltzer (although it’s technically branded as a sparkling canned cocktail). With most other hard seltzers using vodka or some other flavor neutral alcohol, this beverage really highlights the welcoming flavors of a blanco tequila. While the tasters noted this beverage was on the sweeter side, the tequila perfectly compliments the sweetness and tartness of the grapefruit. Also, another key difference here is that there are 2 servings per can so you can share with a friend (or not). 

#2 – Truly Mango Lemonade

Truly really hit a home run with their lemonade variety pack and our tasters couldn’t agree more. Although our tasters enjoyed all 4 flavors in the variety pack, mango lemonade outranked the others…by a lot! Tasters agreed that this flavor tasted tropical and “juicy” and reminded you of childhood favorites. So you’ll definitely get a bit nostalgic drinking this seltzer. 

#1 – Flying Embers Black Cherry Rose

This was the number one ranked product due to its complex flavor profile. Out of all the hard seltzers, this tasted the most “grown up” as noted by one of the tasters. You immediately taste the tartness from the black cherry and then an aromatic sweetness rose  that lingers a bit on the tongue and it finally finishes with a limey/citrusy brightness. It’s tart, slightly sweet, and refreshing without the usually seltzer after-taste. This makes this particular flavor the winner among the 25 flavors our tasters tried. This comes in the Fruit and Flora variety pack so you get two other fruity and complex flavors to try from Flying Embers.

 

While White Claw did rank among the top (well, at least one of the flavors did), other brands beat it based on taste alone. So if you’re feeling adventurous and want to try something new and tasty, get any of these hard seltzers delivered to you in 30 minutes. 

 

Sipsy is a Los Angeles alcohol delivery service so you can get other stuff too…not just hard seltzers. Cheers!

 

Sipsy provides free alcohol delivery in LA, specifically in Sherman Oaks, Studio City, North Hollywood, Van Nuys, Valley Village, Burbank, and Toluca Lake.

Smoke Signals: Why Mezcal is The Hottest Liquor on the Market

What is Mezcal? Tequila’s sexier and smokier cousin is setting the liquor world on fire. Most people believe mezcal is an upscale variation of tequila, but it‘s just as easily accessible as its Jalisco cousin. 

 

It doesn’t take much for this unique spirit to add a world of complex flavors to traditional cocktails that leaves you wondering, “What is that I’m tasting?”, with excited curiosity.

 

The Mezcal Magic 

When you take your first sip of mezcal, the aroma hits you with notes of various herbs, flowers, and vegetables. Then, a smoky finish highlights its “low and slow” cooking method thanks to its underground roasting process. Similar to tequila, there is a familiar warming sensation which is quickly transformed with a smooth and savory finish. 

Smoking the hearts of the agave plants (piñas). For more details on how it’s made, check out Epicurious’s article, “The Rise of Mezcal”.

Smoking the hearts of the agave plants (piñas). For more details on how it’s made, check out Epicurious’s article, “The Rise of Mezcal”.

 

“It’s said to be the fine wine of agave spirits, and some consumers think they need to be a connoisseur to consume it. In reality, mezcal is a complex spirit that’s easy to understand. It’s a brilliant cultural, historical, and fun spirit that can be enjoyed by anyone,” says Chantal Scutt, a bartender in Florida who offers mezcal tastings at a casual but classy bar. 

Quarantine Cocktails

 

Lovers of scotch, tequila and other full-bodied spirits have been flocking to mezcal as an exciting new update to their favorite cocktails. 

Even though it’s considered a craft spirit, it can be used in any cocktail to give a sophisticated edge that adds complex layers of flavor.

 

The Mezcal Mix

Many people are still unsure about going to bars and restaurants during the pandemic. Instead, they’ve been turning to alcohol delivery services like Sipsy to get everything they need to make at home cocktails. 

 

Now is the perfect time to experiment with your favorite spirits without breaking the bank. What spirit connoisseur wouldn’t have fun crafting their own specialty cocktail in the comfort of their own home?

A refreshing cocktail perfect for the summer. Click here to find out more.

 

One of the most talked about mezcals right now is El Silencio, a pioneer in providing meticulously picked agaves that are hand-crafted to deliver a full-bodied flavor. 

 

Devoted fans love how its exotic flavor enhances cocktails without overpowering them. They describe this versatile spirit as something meant to be, “kissed and enjoyed with all five senses.” 

 

In the town of Santa Ana del Rio, there’s a saying – “Para todo mal, mezcal. Y para todo bien, tambien.” Translation – “For everything bad, mezcal. And for everything good, too.” It’s a saying that’s usually followed with a smile and a glass of the local spirit used to cheer on life. 

There’s never been a better time than now to try something new. You’re only a click away from a convenient alcohol delivery service that will get you everything you need in 30 minutes to make a delicious cocktail. How do you plan to cheer on life? Order now and enjoy a kiss of mezcal in 30 minutes.

What time is happy hour (during quarantine)?

Is it Monday? Is it a weekday or a weekend? Is it 11am or 5pm? It’s all a blur when you’re in lockdown. So happy hour is really any time you want it to be…and the best part is there’s no one to judge you since you’re probably drinking alone. In-home alcohol consumption has shot up approximately 52% during the quarantine. With bar and restaurant closures, people are getting their drink-on at home. What are the most popular quarantine drinks? We’ll answer that for you here!

 

We were really curious to see what some of the highest consumed beverages are so we took a deeper look and brought you a list of the top 5 most ordered beverages on Sipsy:

 

#1 – Chardonnay

 Probably because chardonnay can be appropriately consumed during the day and in the evening. During the quarantine and when ordering wine online, drinking times have started earlier in the day and chardonnay is an easy one to enjoy during the day and into the evening, especially after a long day of homeschooling. Some of the top sellers in chardonnay are Hess Select Chardonnay and Barefoot Chardonnay.

 

#2 – Beer

While it is hard to pinpoint one type of beer people are drinking, there are a variety of craft beers that have been flying off the shelves. We’ve seen that people are experimenting more with beers  and trying stuff they usually would at a bar or brewery. One beer that is ordered online a lot is Golden Road Wolf Pup IPA. It’s different yet familiar.

 

#3 – Tito’s Vodka

We’re calling this one out by brand because its sales far surpass any other vodka brand.

 

#4 – Hard Seltzer 

 

with White Claw leading the way. These are easy to drink and kinda guilt-free with under 100 calories per serving. 

 

#5 – Cabernet Sauvignon 

A favorite among wine lovers because of its versatility. A popular mid-range options is the Bogle Cab

 

What’s more interesting is people are trying to bring the bar home. In non-quarantine times, people order the basic; beer, wine, and liquor, but now we’re seeing a 64% spike in liqueurs like aperol and campari, fancy mixers, and garnishes, to try to replicate those yummy hand-crafted cocktails we usually get at bars and restaurants. 

 

An obvious trend is the spike in home delivery services. People are trying to avoid trips to the store so alcohol delivery services such as Sipsy have seen over 200% spike in demand. Google searches for “wine delivery near me” and “order wine online” have quadrupled over the past month.

 

Whether the trends and habits we’ve formed during quarantine will outlast the quarantine itself  – we’ll just have to wait and see. Until then, we just have to sit back and enjoy our judgement-free quarantine drinks!

Which Alcohols Help Avoid Hangovers?

We’ve all been there. Sipping on our favorite cocktails but knowing full well we’ll have to pay for it the next morning. But what the hell…life is short so we chug away and figure we’ll deal with the pain later. So what should you drink to help avoid hangovers?

 

There are some ways to lessen that morning pain, the headaches, the nausea, the regrets (ok we really can’t really help you with you the regrets part)…

 

Studies have shown that alcohols that are lighter in color actually give you less of a hangover. This is because lighter colored drinks have less congeners, which are toxic chemicals that include methanol, isopentanol and acetone. 

 

So Vodka, Gin, and White wine are at the top of the list for alcohols that will give you less of a hangover. Bubbly lovers, don’t get too excited now. Although champagne is lighter in color, the bubbles cause your body to absorb more alcohol and at a faster rate. And that goes for any carbonated alcoholic beverages, so if you must mix something with you vodka, mix water as opposed to tonic or soda.

 

Other things to lessen the hangover pain:

  1. Drink a glass of water after each beverage. Although it won’t prevent a hangover It helps to rehydrate your body, which can lessen some of the effects.
  2. Eat a good breakfast the morning after. Bananas, eggs, and avocados are all great for replenishing some of the nutrients your body lost.
  3. Get back your electrolytes! Drink sports drinks, pedialyte or coconut water. Similarly, liquid ivy can get electrolytes and other nutrients back into your body pretty quickly.
  4. Maybe smoke some weed? Yes, weed can definitely help with some of the symptoms like headaches and nausea, but it won’t actually help your body recover.

 

If you can manage to drink in moderation, have a good meal before and after, and stay hydrated, you’ll definitely be thanking yourself in the morning. Although completely avoiding hangovers may not be possible for everyone. These little tips will definitely help!

 

And always drink responsibly…don’t drink and drive. Sipsy can deliver your vodka, gin, and white wine (and yes we have all the others too!).

Can Alcohol Actually Be Healthy For You?

 

The Mayo clinic suggests that alcohol provides benefits to heart health and can reduce diabetes when consumed in moderation.

Ok, we are not suggesting you shotgun 8 beers…but drinking does actually have health benefits when consumed in the right amounts. So if you like to kick back and drink a beverage or two, there are healthier ways to do it.

We ranked some of the better-for-you alcohols to help you make healthier decisions when drinking, because you’re going to do it anyway so may as well make it good-er for you.

  • Tequila ranks at the top of the list. Good tequilas are made from the blue agave plant, which has some awesome health benefits – it can lower blood sugar and cholesterol level, and it has high levels of inulin which helps your digestive tract. Tequila is also lower in calories…with only about 65 calories, you can afford to have more than one. Here are our top choices in the tequila category:

 

  • While Vodka doesn’t have the wonderful benefits of the agave plant, it is still relatively healthy when it comes to alcohol, thus making it our second pick. Vodka helps your blood vessels relax, which increases blood flow and allows more oxygen to flow through to your blood…more oxygen is always a good thing, right?  Also, with just 80-100 calories a serving, Vodka is definitely better for your waistline. Our top Vodka picks are:
  • Wine & Beer – while beer and wine can be high in calories, there are some better-for-you options. Pinot Noir is the lowest in calories when it comes to wines and has the added benefits of antioxidants. Beer can be healthy-ish too…it actually increases bone density, take that Osteoporosis! Light beer or a Guinness (yes, Guinness only has 125 calories!) is the better way to go. Check these out:

 

  • One well-kept secret is Hard Kombucha. Say what? Yeah, kombucha that gets you tipsy! Kombucha has probiotics which improve digestion, it has lots of antioxidants and it’s only about 150 calories for 11 ounces. One brand we love is Boochcraft because it uses all organic ingredients and it’s cold-pressed so it doesn’t lose many nutrients during the process.

Keep in mind, to maintain all the awesome health benefits, one drink (one serving) is suggested. So 1 beer, a 5oz glass of wine, or 1.5oz of liquor. Remember to always drink responsibly…one way to do that is to order your favorite drinks from Sipsy. We provide free alcohol delivery in LA within 30 minutes, which is probably faster than making a trip to the liquor store.

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