This Stellenbosch cabernet has sure matured differently than I expected. When young, it seemed very traditional compared to most SA cabs we knew at the time and closer to Bordeaux than California. As an almost-ten-year-old, it's solid black and polished, seemingly modern in texture even if drier and more savoury. That could also, I'll acknowledge, be a sign of a wine that's getting older without maturing in all the best ways, and I'll admit to not finding much in the way of secondary nuance here. That is, there's loads of mulberry/blackberry (very typical SA features), with a slight roasted thing going on that I didn't catch at first but which Bob (who was poured blind, as usual) picked up immediately and asked, "Is this South African?" But there's no leather, no earth, no minerality, and no red fruit--virtually none of the things one associates with aging cabernets from California or France. And yet it's not youthful.
What it is is very good for the $22 I paid for it about six years ago.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov