We love great Cabernet Franc, wherever we can find it! It is such an under appreciated varietal, and often a more affordable alternative to Cabernet Sauvignon.
One of the very best places for Cabernet Franc is the commune of Chinon, situated in the Touraine region of the central Loire Valley of France. The problem here though, can be the diversity of styles found, which can range from lighter bodied, simple beaujolais-like wines, all the way to deeply colored and full-bodied, but overly herbaceous and astringently tannic Cabernet Franc (that I honestly can not drink!) One of the region’s most famous producers, Bernard Baudry hits the all the right notes with his 2019 Les Grezeaux which comes from a 65+ year old organically farmed 3 hectare (2.4 = 1 acre) vineyard grown on gravel substrata. The wine is fermented in cement tank for up to 20 days, and then transferred to age 12 months in neutral (3-5 year old) barrels. The wine is bottled unfiltered. The results are absolutely delicious! Extremely complex with savory aromas of dark ripe plum and currants, black and green olive tapenade, crushed green Madagascar peppercorns, cigar box spice. Intense and flavorful, with a telltale minerality of silty-crushed river stone. Perfectly balanced and very supple for drinking now, but a nice fine tannic edge to the lengthy finish promises an excellent future. Enjoy with your favorite grill cuisine, or hearty fall or winter stew or braised shank.