A 'Napa-esque' style of Cabernet Sauvignon 

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Three Saints wine pairs well with an herb-crusted rack of lamb or beef short ribs with scallions, says wine reviewer W. Peter Hoyne. | Matthew Grotto~Sun-Times Media

2007 Three Saints Sixty–Seven Red Blend Santa Barbara County, California

Owners Jim and Mary Dierberg have a long and established history in business and winemaking. At the age of 29, Jim Dierberg became president of First Bank and began acquiring banks in Missouri and Illinois. He has since built the largest family - owned bank lending company in the country. In 1974, Jim purchased the pre-prohibition Hermannhof Vineyards in Herman, Mo., preserving its historic nature while transforming it into an upscale winemaking facility and countryside retreat.

His ambitions did not stop here, as Jim was intent on developing vineyard property in Napa Valley. The overcrowding and his interest in crafting an Old World style of wine pushed him south into Santa Barbara County. In 1997 they planted their first vineyards in the warm inland region of “Happy Canyon” where the Star Lane label was conceived. Later the Dierberg’s became well known for their celebrated pinot noirs and chardonnay from the cooler coastal regions of Santa Maria and Santa Rita Hills.

While Star Lane became the premium cabernet label, the Three Saints brand was meant to be the Dierberg’s entry level. Instead, the 2007 Three Saints 67 speaks more of a brooding and sophisticated “Napaesque” style of Cabernet Sauvignon. With 67 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, the remaining blend consists of five other varietals. The dry alkaline soils and hot days in “Happy Canyon” allow this wine to develop a savory flavor profile with flamboyant mouth-filling fruit. There is plenty of crème de cassis, boysenberry, melted cocoa and caramel along with hints of cedar and sweet tannins in the background. This wine will pair well with an herb-crusted rack of lamb or beef short ribs with scallions. This is a sleeper cabernet from the great 2007 vintage.

Suggested Retail: $19.99

W. Peter Hoyne has been a wine journalist for over 20 years, covering stories of national and international significance. While his professional relationships in the wine industry have allowed him to share a unique perspective of wine, he is also intrigued by the culinary aspect and harmony that exist between wine and food. As a wine advocate, he is committed to consumer education and is focused on upcoming trends and American wine-buying habits.