WBW 44: French Cabernet Franc

by Tim Elliott on April 2, 2008

It’s time for another installment of our virtual tasting called Wine Blogging Wednesday (or WBW amongst friends) and this edition will be a tipping point for this event, I think, not because of being the 44th consecutive month or the theme, but the host.

I’ve written about Gary Vaynerchuk here recently and I think his hosting this month will bring a lot more people into the WBW fold. And I think his theme of French Cabernet Franc is a great choice since it’s one that a lot of us wine geeks overlook in favor of more obscure varieties. Most people know of Cab Franc as one of the 6 grapes allowed in Bordeaux red blends but in the Loire, this grape comes into it’s own.

Normally I would head over to Solo Vino in St. Paul and ask Chuck for a recommendation but I found an easier solution this time. Via Twitter, Jill from Domaine547.com picked up the suggestion of a WBW pack of three selections for this month, next month and June. So I clicked a few buttons and purchased 25% of my WBW needs for this year.

Chateau du Hureau 2005The wine in the pack for this month is from Chateau de Hureau in the Saumur-Champigny appellation of the Loire Valley. It is 100% Cabernet Franc and made by Philippe Vatan who tends to 42 acres of vineyard plots scattered around various appellations in the Loire. The common denominator is they all are planted to Cab Franc. If this wine is any indication, I’ll be searching out more from this producer.

Tasting Note:

Chateau de Hureau, Cabernet Franc, Saumur-Champigny 2005 ($17) – Dark purple-ruby in color with aromas of black raspberry, blackberry, menthol and spices. Black currant and dark cherry fruit with white pepper and bell pepper flavors finishing with moderate, but well integrated, tannins. Very full in flavor and palate weight but also has nice green aromas and flavors. I think I’d lay this one down and see what develops in a year or two.

13.5% ABV
Natural cork closure
Score: 89
Rating: ★★★½☆

Buy this wine online

Thanks to Gary from Wine Library TV for hosting this month and bringing the THUNDER with his post today. I’m looking forward to seeing the round-up of interesting Cabernet Franc to try after my experience here. I also think that Gary’s main point is to get out and try new wines; great advice for any wine lover no matter how geeky they may be…

Next month I’m hosting for the third time and keeping us in the Old World… yes, my favorite white variety is queued up so next time will be special. Hope you join us.

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