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Unfortunately, their Web site is a bit out of date and doesn’t even mention a varietal bottling of cab franc.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.