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Blind Tasting of Cabernet Franc

2009 April 6

20090667I’ve fallen behind in my blog posts because I’ve been to so many wine events in the past several weeks that I have more to write about than I have time to write. As a result, this post probably should have been done a week ago but is just now getting posted.

Last Saturday, Sheri and I went over to Travis’s house for another wine get-together, but this time it wasn’t just the boys. Travis’s wife, Mario, put together a fabulous spread of food which included a slow-simmered beef stew with a mystery wine reduction. Actually, four other wines were also a mystery and Travis seemed to really enjoy keeping us in the dark.

The wines were all the same varietal. There were some initial guesses that the mystery wines were either a Syrah or some other Rhône blend, but we were quickly shot down on those calls. It wasn’t until we tasted the last wine with a distinctly vegetal/green pepper aroma that we could tell what the varietal was.

Cabernet Franc has for long been relegated to a blending wine, but these bottles proved that it could stand on it own and when nurtured properly and picked at the right time with the proper techniques, produces a very wonderful smooth-drinking wine. Sorry, I didn’t take any notes and I didn’t even research how much these wines are worth, but here were the wines we drank ranked by my preference and no particular method of scoring:

2005 Domaine de la Butte Bourgueil, France

2003 Pride Mountain Vineyards Cabernet Franc

2005 Ovid Experiment K1.5 (only 73.5% Cab Franc)

2006 Cayuse Flying Pig (only 60% Cab Franc)

Strange how the Cayuse with the least amount of Cab Franc in the wine had the strongest vegetal aromas. Personally, I don’t care for that smell because it reminds of things that taste bitter and astringent. The French wine and the Pride had a much nicer aroma so atypical of what I expect a Cab Franc to smell like that I completely misread those two. And once I knew the varietal, I could pick out the telltale green pepper aromas in the Ovid. We had some other great wines of course and some kumomoto oysters and various nice pâtés along with the great food that Mario cooked. Oh yeah, the mystery wine in the reduction was also a Cab Franc. Special thanks to Travis and Mario for having us over, especially since I felt like we just invited ourselves.

Copyright © 2009, Eric Hwang and BricksOfWine. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eric Hwang and BricksOfWine with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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