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Tom’s Wine Finds: Napa 2011 Red Mare Cabernet Sauvignon
Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon

Tom’s Wine Finds: Napa 2011 Red Mare Cabernet Sauvignon

Wine of the Week: 2011 Red Mare Cabernet Sauvignon

This is the inaugural post of Tom’s Foodie Blog Wine of the Week. Every week I will be tasting and reviewing a new wine that I picked up recently. This week I am reviewing a 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from Red Mare.

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Labels

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Labels

2011 Red Mare Cabernet Sauvignon Analysis

Red Mare is a small producer that sources fruit from well-respected vineyards throughout Napa Valley. This 2011 Cabernet Sauignon vintage gathers fruits from Oakville,  St.Helena, Rutherford. These three areas of the valley each have their own micro-climate and produce fruit that each lends a different flavor element to the wine.

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Color

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Color

The Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon is generally fruit forward, allowing you to taste black cherry, raspberry. There are lovely layers of chocolate, cassis and a fleeting memory of vanilla as your finish the swallow. The wine is juicy up front, rounded at the middle and a relatively smooth finish. This wine does have the characteristic Cabernet Sauvignon long bite at the end.

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon  Served with Charcuterie

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Served with Charcuterie

This wine really needs to breathe at least 20 minutes, perhaps longer. My first sip, freshly poured out of the bottle, was unbalanced and tanic. After I let the wine rest in the glass for 20 minutes, the aroma became much suppler and the flavor profile became much more complex.

After 30 minutes in the decanter, I was really able to taste the subtle flavors of raspberry and finish of vanilla and clove that I previously mentioned.  This wine is young for a Cabernet Sauvignon, I expect it to get better with more bottle aging.

Food Pairing with 2011 Red Mare Cabernet Sauvignon

Since this wine is fruit forward and a little acidic, I paired it with a charcuterie board full of fatty meat, creamy cheeses and aggressive flavored bread. The wine paired well with the creamy soft cheeses like brie and Havarti and went perfectly with the hard aged white cheddar. It also paired well with the crusty garlic loaf.

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Charturier Pairing

Red Mare 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Charcuterie Pairing

I would also serve this wine with any steak preparation, lamb, hamburgers and even salmon.  

About Red Mare Label

Red Mare is a wine producer, so they do not have their own fancy estate. They source wine from Napa’s best vineyards and produce/bottle the wine at Napa Wine Company facilities in Oakville.

The label was founded by Proprietor Jim Striegel, who first starting making wine with his father as a child. With 40 years’ experience in Marketing and Real Estate, he started his own label. Partnering with winemaker Anne Vawter, from Paradigm Winery, they produced their first Red Mare’s first vintage in 2007 and are now on their 7th vintage.  Their wines are sold directly to retailers and restaurants.

Based on what I tasted in this wine I expect big things from Red Mare Wines in the coming years.

2011 Red  Mare Cabernet Sauvignon Vital Stats

  • Napa Valley Fruit and Bottled
  • Bottle Date: July 2013
  • Alcohol: 13.8%
  • Time In Oak: 21 months
  • 100% French Oak (30% new )
  • Tom’s Foodie Blog Quick Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
  • Note: If I were to see this wine on a restaurant menu, I would order it. If the price point matches your budget, I suggest you do the same. 

About Tom Holmberg

Tom grew up in a cultural diverse neighborhood and a culturally diverse family, so he has learned to appreciate all types of food. "I am not a Chef, nor do I play one on T.V., but I have learned to appreciate food from years of eating and cooking." Tom also spent 10 years in the restaurant industry in various roles, from Prep Cook to server.


  1. What a great review with amazing pictures to go along with it. Thank you for sharing this and giving Red Mare Wines a whirl.

  2. Red Mare sounds like a great wine and I am sure there is going to be better improvements over the next few years.

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