Klean Cabernet Sauvignon


Klean Cabernet Sauvignon

Cabernet Sauvignon / Klean Low / 9%

A low calorie Cabernet with full flavor! Only 85 calories per serving, it is an easy choice for wine lovers looking to make healthier drinking choices without sacrificing quality. Flavors of blackberry and bing cherry are met with smooth tannins. Live Klean, drink Klean!

We all know by now that there are real health benefits to be had by enjoying a glass or two of red wine. But the negative effects are practically unavoidable as well. Extra calories are never good for the body, and the wine hangover is renowned for being extra harsh. In this day and age, however, there are healthier options out there that can give you all of the good with less of the bad. And you don’t have to turn to fully dealcoholized wine.

Winemakers like Klean are coming out with a variety of offerings that are low in calories and low in alcohol content while maintaining most of the characteristics that make wine delicious. Klean currently offers a Rose, a Pinot Grigio, and a Chardonnay, but today I will be sampling their only red, a Cabernet Sauvignon. Each of these wines comes in at just nine percent alcohol by volume and contains only 85 calories per five-ounce serving.

I have found these types of low-alcohol offerings to be a bit of a mixed bag. Generally speaking, I much prefer the flavor they offer when compared to dealcoholized wines, which seem to lose some of their character through the alcohol-removal process. That said, attempting to keep a wine low in calories must limit the creators in some ways as well. We will see if this wine can stand up to a traditional Cabernet or if it comes up short in any way. Time to get started with this Klean Cabernet Sauvignon review.

Klean Cabernet Sauvignon Review

This is the second wine of theirs that I’ve tried, and I am a big fan of Klean’s aesthetic. The bottles have a, well, clean white label with the brand name running vertically in negative space with the wine visible behind it. There isn’t much else cluttering the front of the bottle, besides the number 85 (for the calorie count) and the vintage. This particular Cabernet is from 2019.

The back of the labels presents their tagline, “Full flavor, fewer calories,” as well as some tasting notes, which I don’t love as a reviewer but can of course be useful for those browsing in a store. There is also a bit more nutritional information, like the fact that this wine contains only three grams of carbs per serving. Let’s crack the bottle and find out what’s inside.

It can be tough to tell with a tinted glass bottle, but in the glass this wine is a deep, opaque red, bordering on black on the underside. The first word that comes to mind upon taking in this wine’s aroma is ‘full.’ In many products, less calories can mean less flavor. Although I haven’t tasted this wine yet, I can be pretty confident that isn’t the case here.

There are strong notes of spice, a hint of black pepper, and underlying it all is a rich black cherry base. I also get some hints of mixed red berries. There is virtually no sweetness on the nose, so I anticipate this wine will be rather dry. A good sign for me when it comes to Cab.

While these aromas do much to spark the imagination, the only way to truly evaluate wine is through the tasting experience. So let’s take a sip and answer the question, “Is Klean Cabernet Sauvignon good?”


Is Klean Cabernet Sauvignon Good?

The tasting is not exactly what I expected. All of those bursting aromas are subdued a bit, which probably prevents it from overwhelming the taste buds, and some of them even morph into new flavors.

There isn’t much of that spice present on the tongue. The berry flavors come to the forefront, and the black cherry that was on the nose actually transforms into more of a bing cherry note. This isn’t that much of a difference, but it is noticeable.

The mouthfeel is silky smooth. The body is right around medium. It is definitely on the drier side of things but not in that way that leaves your tongue searching for more. I would say that the tannins are present but not too strong. It’s a perfect level for me, someone who loves a red that’s dry but not too dry.

All of the berry and cherry notes play well with each other. There are very faint shades of oak and pepper that give the mouth just the littlest bit of kick that it needs.

Overall the flavor profile is complex without being confusing to the tongue. It’s an easy-drinking red with barely a hint of sweetness. All of the notes are satisfying and balanced enough that it’s tough to find anything to complain about. This wine will surely earn a high grade from me, but what will be my final Klean Cabernet Sauvignon rating?


Klean Cabernet Sauvignon Rating

Cab is the standard in red wine that everything is held up to. When a company sets out to make a quality Cabernet Sauvignon with fewer calories and lower alcohol content, they are taking a risk, because people will always expect a lot from that varietal. But Klean has impressed me thus far with their risk-taking. Their wines bring strong flavors to the table, and this one in particular really checks all of the boxes for me personally. I can’t really nail down any one area where this wine struggles. Everything doesn’t necessarily flow together seamlessly, but that is me being as nitpicky as possible. From the presentation to the aroma to the tasting itself, I truly enjoyed this tasting experience.

When it comes to dealcoholized wine, I grade on a curve for obvious reasons. Not so much with low-abv wine. I never expect it to entirely stand up to a traditional version, but in my experience it can get darn close. And this one does just that. Which is why I feel compelled to end this Klean Cabernet Sauvignon review by awarding it a full 5 out of 5 stars. I will admit that it seems tailored to my personal tastes, but I also feel strongly that you won’t be disappointed if you pick up a bottle for yourself. And you’ll feel better afterwards, too.


Photo Credit: