Glorious Cabernet Franc

Cab FrancOne of my favorite wines is Cabernet Franc, which is one of the main varieties in Bordeaux blends. Cab Franc is typically used as a blending wine to add more complexity to Cabernet Sauvignon or more structure to Merlot.

But Cab Franc is also created as a single-varietal wine; in other words, a stand-alone wine. And one of the best we’ve tasted recently was a 2004 Cab Franc from Corliss Estates in Walla Walla.

This beauty was elegant and balanced, with a complex bouquet of cherry, spice, cassis, pepper and cocoa. We found it so rich that it was excellent without food. However, parmesan cheese went well with it, and later, we paired it nicely with a slow-cooked savory stew.

Many people don’t realize that Cabernet Franc is one of the genetic parents to Cabernet Sauvignon; the other is Sauvignon Blanc. In addition to Washington, you can find it planted in California and in the Bordeaux and Loire regions in France.

When blended, it adds both a subtly and an “oomph” to Cabernet Sauvignon and other Bordeaux varieties. But on its own, quite simply, Cabernet Franc is glorious.

Corliss 2004 Columbia Valley Cab Franc is a prime example.


2 thoughts on “Glorious Cabernet Franc

  1. Cab Franc has become one of my favorites over this last year. I have the same feelings. I love a full bodied wine that can just make me say “ah”. It’s like when it’s in a concert with other wines it adds to the tune, but when it plays by itself, it is just beauty!

    There are a few Colorado Winemakers making a full Cab Franc wine and I have to tell you, they are pretty amazing. Bonacquisti Wines, Balistreri Vineyards, and Dithyramb Winery are my favorites. I am going to check out Corliss!

  2. Thanks for your comment, Kim. I’ve not tried any Colorado wine – thanks for listing your favorites. I’ll add them to my list.

    A few of my other WA faves – Barrage Cellars, Fielding Hills, Walla Walla Vintners, Fidelitas, Watermill, Northwest Totem Cellars, Hard Row to Hoe, Vin du Lac, DiStefano and Page Cellars.

    In Napa, Goosecross Cellars makes a tasty Cab Franc too!


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