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8th ANNUAL CABERNET SHOOTOUT CHALLENGE ~~~~ pit your palate against the pros

Noon:  VIP Vintners Panels

1:30: Cabernet Shootout Challenge and walk around tasting 

3:30 Awards ceremony and raffle

4:00 Event ends 

For many wine enthusiasts, January is associated with a major tasting of Zinfandels.  Now Cabernet fans, thanks to the Bay Area Wine Society  and Affairs of the Vine, can also indulge their passion at the beginning of the year in one of the most historic settings in the Bay Area - The Old Mint which dates from 1874 and slated to become the SF History Museum.  Enjoy the experience without the crowd crush of the mega tastings or long drive to Passport weekends. 


Over a number of weeks in the fall, Affairs of the Vine convened a select panel of 40 wine makers, writers, retailers, educators, and consultants to judge the 8th Cabernet Shootout among mostly limited production artisan Cabernets, Cabernet Francs and Cabernet blends from over 35 different viticultural areas.  Without regard to price, vintage or region, this group of experts moved 64 wines to the final round selecting 32 "best of the best."

 The Cabernet Challenge offers a VIP ticket to attend one of two concurrent PANEL SESSIONS of winemakers who will discuss the nature and nurture of crafting vino:

~HOW PLACE AFFECTS TASTE: How much does terroir play a role in the crafting of Cabernet versus winemaking techniques.  This panel will concentrate on how site influences a winemaker moving from vineyard to fermentation, touching on appellation and specific geographical location, clone preference, vine management, pick date effected by weather, influence of marketing, and the like.  ~THE WINEMAKERS SIGNATURE: This panel will concentrate on stylistic choices in the winemaking process--the winemaker's personal decisions, focusing on such specifics as yeasts, whether to go with whole cluster fermentation temperature and tanks, alcohol content, punch downs vs. pup-overs, barrel age, skin contact time, bottling date and related topics.

After the optional workshops the finalists can be evaluated in a blind tasting. Each Cab enthusiast can select their favorites in a flight of 16 Cabs containing five of the top 10 wines chosen by the panelists.

In this special oenological Pro/Am competition, the results of the professionals'  Cab Shootout will then be compared to the tally of the  'amateurs' Cab Challenge, both tabulated by gender.      

This distinctly different format provides a unique opportunity to compare your top wines to those of the 'tastemakers' in the wine industry.  It also allows participants to sample other than the usual suspects and rate rising star wineries.

During the afternoon, attendees will also be able to mingle and meet with a number of the vintners from the wineries that participated in the Cabernet Shootout in an open walk around tasting accompanied by various nibbles.

Sample wines from a mix of boutique producers from 35 appellations located throughout the state.  Participating wineries such as  Auburn James, Cameron Hughes, Deerfield Ranch, En Garde, Enoteca Five, Estate 1856, J.Rickards, Pendleton Estate, Penman Springs, Sol Rouge, 3 Steves, and WinerySF

We will also be selling bottles of wines poured by the participating wineries to raise funds for One Brick that assists charities with temporary manpower needs. And since we are expecting 30+ wineries  to pour in the walk around tasting, and no more than 250 tickets will be sold, the odds are quite good that you can walk away with a superb bottle of vino.

TRANSIT & PARKING: A block away from BART and Muni Metro, adjacent to the 5th and Mission Garage.

PAYMENT (previous Early Bird discounts have expired)

Regular price for Cabernet Shootout Challenge plus meet the vintners & sample their current releases:   $69

Meetup discount ticket : $34; $55 for two / Limited tickets

VIP ticket for Winemakers panel + Cabernet Shootout Challenge + Meet the vintners & sample their current releases: $89 

Meetup discount VIP ticket price: $44; $79 for two / Limited tickets


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  • tom m.

    The voting results are posted on our blog.

    February 3, 2014

  • Lew


    January 18, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Love to join you, but I'm moving that day.

    December 29, 2013

    • tom m.

      Are you also moving on Sat? We moved the day from Sun to Sat. and from TI to downtown SF.

      December 30, 2013

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