Wine of the Week: Lovingston Cabernet Franc 2010

Oct 24

There has been a lot of discussion in the Virginia wine industry in the last year or so about whether we should continue to hang our hats on cabernet franc as our red grape strong suit, or instead shift to merlot or petit verdot.

Virginia cabernet franc decisively trounced a Loire Valley cabernet franc in the first Virginia Wine Summit on 10/2 when Barboursville cabernet franc 2008 was the clear favorite over a fine Chinon. But more to the point, if you look at the results of the 2012 Virginia Wine Governor’s Cup, it’s compelling that there were no gold medals for petit verdot, while in contrast there were 2 gold medals, a whopping 33 silver medals, and 22 bronze medals, or 57 medal winning wines altogether, by far and away more medals than any other grape or blend category.

Consistency says a lot about the terroir of a grape variety for a particular region, and these 55 award-winning Virginia cabernet francs came from four different vintages; 2007-2010. Combing this with the Barboursville 2008 caberent franc reserve trouncing the Chinon in the Virginia Wine Summit, it’s clear that we should be re-evaluating the track record of cabernet franc in Virginia.

In that vein, the Wine of the Week is the Lovingston Vineyards Monticello cabernet franc 2010. The color was dark garnet, followed by aromatics of dark plum and cherry. On the palate, wow; intensely fruity with mineral and black pepper notes on the nose. On the palate, the wine is bursting with black cherry and plum flavors, blending with fine, long, smooth tannins and electric acidity. Just reaching its prime, this wine will last another 8 years.

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