Cabernet Franc - Printable Version

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- yabloka - 11-10-2003 04:12 AM

Hey there! I'm looking for some suggestions on a good cabernet franc. I've had a few, but they've lacked body. All initial bang and zero follow up. Is it my bad luck with choices, or is it just the varietal?

- winoweenie - 11-10-2003 07:24 AM

IMHO Yab your experience and mine are in sync. Yhe best are supposedly from Argentina but I've found them lacking. The French make great use of the grape in St. Emilion and to some extent in St. Julian. Several St. Emilions' use almost 1/2 cab franc blends (with merlot) very successfully. Angelus, and Ausone, both of which I'd classify as equal to 1st growth status, come to mind. The big difference is they've had a few hundred years head start on picking the right terrior for the grape.

- Innkeeper - 11-10-2003 08:09 AM

Look for Chinon and Saumur Champigny from the Loire Valley in France. They are 100% Cabernet Franc. For individual producers, look on the Loire thread back 60 days.

- Thomas - 11-10-2003 08:40 AM

Be aware that Loire Cabernet Franc is great, but it is often leaner than Bordeaux and many New World offerings. Some fine Cabernet Francs (again, on the lean side) are produced in Friuli-Venezia-Julia, Italy.

This is one variety that screams out for food. I particularly like it with rich stuff such as calves liver in Madeira and balsamic sauce.

- Innkeeper - 11-10-2003 11:32 AM

A couple of fuller Californains we've enjoyed are Ironstone which we used to drink by the box at one time, and Tobin James Paso Robles Desparado. Some folks have complained that the Ironstone has become a little too oaky; so you will have to make a value judgment on that. TJ is just down the road from you, and if you can get ahold of one of their CFs you will be very happy.

- Kcwhippet - 11-10-2003 12:43 PM

A bit of a long road, IK. My daughter lives up near Folsom and it's more than 250 miles from her place down to the Paso area.

- winoweenie - 11-10-2003 06:06 PM

Kc in case you haven't noticed, IKs' geography of Calif leaves lots to be desired. Easterners can't seem to comprehend the tremendous distances we have here in the west. WW

- Innkeeper - 11-10-2003 06:12 PM

Have driven it two times in recent years. Piece of cake!

- yabloka - 11-11-2003 12:50 AM

You don't know how hard it is to get out of the city of Folsom! Thanks for the great advice. I'll keep my eyes open for both. Paso Robles is a tad far though. I'm heading the other direction for apples and wine tomorrow!

- Kcwhippet - 11-11-2003 05:47 AM

Tell you what, Yabloka. One of the best things you can do is cultivate a relationship with a local wine merchant. So, here's one you can talk to. Go see Marcus Graziano at Capitol Cellars. They're in that weird shopping center in Gold River at 2220 Gold Spring Court - #106. He's got a nice little shop and you can ask him questions and maybe buy a bottle or two. He peridically comes up with some good deals on hard to find wines, too.

- yabloka - 11-11-2003 10:46 PM

I've heard of the place, just haven't had a chance to drop by. I'm trying to cut some time out at the end of the week. BTW, I spent some time at Boeger vineyards this afternoon. Pretty good wines, good prices, and friendly staff. I had to get some apples while I was up there. Thanks for the tip!

- wineguruchgo - 11-11-2003 10:49 PM

Boeger is one of my favorite wineries out there!! So charming, so unassuming! I recently heard that their Syrah just got 90+ points by Wine & Spirits or Wine Enthusiast, Decanter???? One of them. I can't remember.

I've had some really nice picnics there.

- Brom - 11-12-2003 05:50 PM

I don't think you are going to find a big CF. If it was easy to do, Cheval Blanc wouldn't be so expensive. I understand your gripe thop - the perfume is so beautiful you want so much out of the wine.

I think some of the better examples of 100% CF are believe it or not made on the East Coast. Maybe look for a Washington state producer.

You can also look for Bourgueils from the Loire and Trentinos from Italy

- Thomas - 11-12-2003 10:30 PM

Brom has hit on something--East Coast Cabernet Franc does have its merits--some very highly recommended merits. Why he says "believe it or not" in reference to those merits is a mystery, unless he believes the East Coast is an inferior wine region, which it is not. By East Coast I refer to New York and Virginia too, not to mention Ontario, Canada. But I did not mention Cabernet Franc from those places because in California the chances are slim to none you will find them.

[This message has been edited by foodie (edited 11-13-2003).]

- Brom - 11-14-2003 01:54 PM

Yes, I do believe the East Coast is an inferior wine region. Don't you?

The CabFrancs I have had in the last couple of years are far and away the best PA & NJ red wines I have ever tasted. I have had several VA and NY wines as well.

Would you choose any East Coast Cabernet Sauvignons or Pinot Noirs if your choice included California or French examples?

If so, why and which?

- winoweenie - 11-14-2003 06:28 PM

At it agin there Brom? The topic of this post is " Cabernet Franc ". Can't for the life of me find anything in Foodies' or anyone-elses' post referring to cabernet sauvignon or pinot noir. Does this give you any idea why the people on this board think you're confrotational? SHEESH! WW

- Thomas - 11-14-2003 08:30 PM

Let's put it this way: I have had some NY and Canadian Cabernet Francs with great merit that will go head-to-head with those of the Loire.

As for Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir, ww is right: we weren't talking about them, but there are some of the latter in NY that get high marks from me. And if anyone tastes Finger Lakes Riesling without perking up his or her taste buds, than that person isn't thinking or isn't using taste buds.

Oh, and my mind is not so closed as to consider any wine region as inferior. While I may not like what certain regions or producers put forward, I judge individual wines on their individual merits, and I never assume I know so much as to condemn or praise a complete region--to do that, I would first have to taste everything the region has to offer, which I doubt most of us get to do.

[This message has been edited by foodie (edited 11-14-2003).]

- Innkeeper - 11-14-2003 08:51 PM

I know there are some very good CFs from Eastern North America, but didn't recommend them because I thought our friend from CA had better access to those from CA and the Loire Valley, than to those from the East.

- Thomas - 11-14-2003 08:56 PM

IK, I also said that a few posts back. But I don't think that information is what concerns Brom.

- Brom - 11-18-2003 01:25 PM

"At it again"?

I thought I was replying to this statement: "Why he says "believe it or not" in reference to those merits is a mystery, unless he believes the East Coast is an inferior wine region, which it is not"
This is in the post directly above mine.

You may note that it does not say 'an inferior region for CF'. This statement says it is a mystery why I believe the East Coast to be an inferior wine region and contradicts my belief.

This statement is about the East Coast as a wine growing region. Does anyone disagree?

What is the matter with you people?