Saturday, December 16, 2006

Francly, My Dear...

I am so very sorry.

I really can’t help myself. Bad wordplay is a curse I must live with.

Anyhow, I’m doing a somewhat unusual weekend posting because there is something in my glass I just have to write about.

I love cabernet franc. Maybe it’s my tendency to root for the underdog. Maybe it’s the cherry and spiciness. But cabernet franc occupies a special place in my grape pantheon. I love to see it in blends, and I love to see a bottle of straight-up cab franc on the shelf.

So when I saw a bottle of Preston Winery Cabernet Franc 2002 at the latest Mr. Friendly’s wine sale, I just had to have it. Preston is a family-owned winery in Washington’s Columbia Valley.

Unfortunately, their Web site is a bit out of date and doesn’t even mention a varietal bottling of cab franc. However, while doing the Google search, I did run across this interesting piece about cabernet franc being the new “It” grape in the Northwest.

The nose on the Preston is a mix of black cherry, pencil lead and vanilla. The flavors are more of the same with a certain smokiness and firm acidity. It’s a wonderful drink of wine and a great expression of the grape.

As a rule, I don’t like any grape being “en vogue.” Just like I don’t writers excessively putting words “in quotes.”

But if it means that more winemakers will focus their attention on cab franc, I can live with it. Another reason I have a special fondness for cab franc is that it performs quite well here in the Southeast. Both Virginia and North Carolina are having great success with it.

Speaking of which, I have a bottle of Horton Vineyards Cabernet Franc 2002 at home, which I’ll soon be tasting. It will be interesting to see how they compare.

Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

it's not something I go for too often, but I have enjoyed cab franc from time to time, probably should be more open to this underdog!

John said...

Cab franc can be hit or miss, depending on the producer, but there are some great ones. Great food wine also.