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by Fred McMillin
How Much to Pay For Cabernet?
You decide how high a quality wine you want, and then look at our WineDay Buyer's Cap (B.C.). It will tell you the most you should pay for that quality. We applied it to California Chardonnay last time. Now let's apply the WineDay B.C. to Golden State Cabernet Sauvignon.
The Rest of the Story
We'll look at Cabs rated from 79 to 95. A 79 is of modest quality, a 95 is magnificent. How much does it cost to move up from a 79 rating to an 80? Only a buck. But, the higher you go, moving up one point is much more expensive. Here are the numbers, based on the averages from the last 10 months of my tastings.
How I Use The B.C. (Buyer's Cap)
My House Wine - Because it costs only a dollar a point, I'm going up to about an 82, and ask my wine merchant for his best California Cab around $10.
My Cab for Guest - It is three or four times more expensive to move up one point as we cruise upward in the 80 ratings. My tastings show the 86s are plenty pleasing, so I grab the best Cab around $20.
Here is a good example of a wine I'd buy at a particular rating level.
Rating The Wine
There are no Napa Cabs in the four lowest ratings. The typical bargain Cabs are from other regions, such as Monterey.
However, five of the six more expensive, higher rated Cabs are from Napa grapes.
So, my house wine isn't likely to be a Napa, but my guests are likely to see a Napa label.
This page created July 2000