Blind Wine Tasting Notes: Cabernet Franc

There are a handful of us who get together monthly to worship our wine via a mechanism commonly called a “blind tasting.” We call our events the “South Bay Wine Education Series.” Each month, we choose a different varietal and endeavor to educate our palates about the distinctive properties of each wine we taste. We each research, shop for, and bring our own selections. There’s usually about seven to nine of us around the table, which, as you can imagine, is completely filled with glassware. If we didn’t have large dining room tables to support our worship practices, we’d have logistical issues. Or we’d repeatedly spill wine from our TV trays!

Last week at the home of my dear friends Alexis and Bob, we tasted seven Cabernet Franc wines. The amazing aspect of this tasting was that there’s not a lot of pure-varietal Cab Franc available in the local marketplace. I know — I called around. The fact that we managed to not duplicate any labels (always an interesting sidelight to a blind tasting) was something I find rather astounding.

In this and future posts, I plan to list the results of the group tastings I attend and host so that you, gentle reader, can make informed purchase decisions about varietals you are considering. You’ll see how the group ranked the wines collectively, and underneath that you’ll see how I scored them on a 20-point scale. To aid our scoring, both individual and group, we use this wine scoring sheet. So that you can typically get the straight scoop quickly, I’ll try not to clutter these “results” posts with too much verbiage. (Except for this first one, of course.) You’ll find these tasting results in the Tasting Results category that appears in the navigation links to your right.

If you’d like to see the results of our previous tastings, I encourage you to post a comment.

Group Ranking
+3 Robert Sinskey ‘01 Los Carneros, 13.7%
+2 Burrell School “Le Grand Rouge” ‘02 Santa Cruz Mtns., 14%
+2 Hahn Estates ‘04 Santa Lucia Highlds, Monterey Cty., 13.5%
+2 Hawthorne Mtn. ‘02 Okanagan Valley, Brit. Columbia, 13%
-1 St. Supery ‘01 Dollarhill Vineyard, Napa Valley, 14.5%
-3 Cooper-Garrod ‘02 Francville Vyd., Santa Cruz Mtns., 14.5%
-4 Stonefly ‘01 Napa Valley, 13.2%

Winehiker’s Ranking
Hahn Estates 17.5
Cooper-Garrod 15.5
Stonefly 14
St. Supery 12
Hawthorne Mountain 12
Robert Sinskey 11.5
Burrell School “Le Grand Rouge” 11

Next month, our chosen grape is Barbera. I think I’ll go exotic and whirl up some kind of olive-and-feta concoction to go with it.



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