Maker: Carmenet Winery, Paso Robles, California
Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon
Packaging: 3 liter box
Our Rating: 8 out of 10
(Chardonnay box shown in photo.) We’ve had our eye on the hexagonal box of Carmenet Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 for a while, and finally opened a box. We found it to be quite aromatic, with dark berries, leather, and vanilla. The wine itself is medium-bodied, with berry flavors dominated by spice and oak. Overall, we liked the wine but didn’t find that it offered anything special – it’s simply an average box wine that would be fine for the glass-a-day red wine drinker or perhaps a party where quantity and convenience are paramount.
As we researched this box wine in particular and Carmenet in general, we discovered that the brand has been discontinued as of May, 2006. While perhaps no great loss in the grand scheme of wine branding, we’re a bit disappointed to lose a member of the much smaller universe of makers of reasonable quality boxed wines. Carmenet was the only hexagonal box on our local shelves, so we’ll lose a bit of diversity. Any number of inexpensive bottled cabs are as good as this offering from Carmenet, but we’re still sorry to see it go.