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Cabernet Franc

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FOOD
November 11, 2009 | S. Irene Virbila
Cabernet Franc is so identified with the Loire Valley in France that it's hard to remember that the grape is also much loved in the Veneto. Just tasted: the 2007 Montecchia "Godimondo." This is one smooth Cabernet Franc from a family whose history in the area goes way back -- as in the 10th century in Venice. It has all the spiciness and earthy qualities you'd expect, along with deep, bright-flavored fruit. A truly delicious bottle, perfect for a roast chicken or duck, a chicken fricassee or pasta with sausage or chicken livers.
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NEWS
April 7, 2014 | By S. Irene Virbila
What wines are selling best on Amazon.com ? You might be surprised. There's more than just the expected popular brands of Cabernet and Chardonnay. Curious about what the top-selling wines on Amazon.com are at the moment, I approached the Seattle-based mega-company to see if anyone could tell me. After much back and forth, I got a list of 10: There are some of the expected  - two Pinot Noirs, two Cabernet Sauvignon or Bordeaux-style reds, and a Chardonnay; but there are also the unexpected - a Roussanne, a Semillon, and a sweet Black Muscat.
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FOOD
March 28, 2007 | S. Irene Virbila
Cabernet Franc is traditionally a blending grape in Bordeaux, but in the Loire Valley, in Chinon and Bourgeuil, it comes into its own producing supple wines with a dose of black pepper and spice. California winemakers never seem to have taken to the grape. But John Skupny, who started Lang & Reed winery with his family just more than 10 years ago, thought he'd try his hand at making a Cabernet Franc from grapes grown in Rutherford's western bench. He makes two, actually: this one, which is released a year after it's made, and an age-worthy one called Premier Etage.
NEWS
February 23, 2014 | By S. Irene Virbila
Here's a scenario: You've got a hankering for roast chicken, either from your favorite takeout, a restaurant, or from your own oven. Mine would be Judy Rodger's justly famous bird with bread and arugula salad from her masterful “The Zuni Cafe Cookbook: A Compendium of Recipes and Cooking Lessons from San Francisco's Beloved Restaurant.” The beautiful thing about roast chicken is that it pairs with both red and white wines. Nothing too intense and certainly no reds with massive tannins.
FOOD
March 5, 2003 | S. Irene Virbila
Cabernet Franc, the black grape that's often blended with Cabernet Sauvignon in Bordeaux and actually predominates in St. Emilion's fabled Cheval Blanc, doesn't get much respect in this country. That's why this 100% Cabernet Franc from northern Santa Barbara County is such a thrilling discovery. It's a marvelously crafted wine with a perfume of red berries and smoke and a gorgeous texture and medium weight.
FOOD
April 2, 2003 | Rod Smith, Special to The Times
Napa Valley means Cabernet Sauvignon to most wine drinkers. Yet it only accounts for about a third of the valley's acreage, leaving plenty of room for a number of lesser-known grapes. The other Cabernet, for example. In recent vintages Cabernet Franc has quietly carved out a respectable niche. A decade ago, producers had almost no pure Cab Franc offerings. But now more than two dozen producers bottle a Cabernet Franc or Franc-heavy blend.
FOOD
January 29, 1997
"Cabernet Franc is going to be the best Bordeaux variety for many areas of Santa Barbara County. I like Cheval Blanc, but it's that $100-a-bottle lunacy. This is a more down-to-earth choice. It comes from Thompson Vineyard, which is one of the best in the area. It's a big, ripe, stepping-up-to-the-plate Cabernet Franc."
FOOD
December 2, 1998
"Down here around Solvang, Cabernet Franc doesn't develop as much of an herbal aspect as it sometimes does in other places. We get more rich berry flavors. I think the 1996 Buttonwood Cabernet Franc is a great example of that. I really like the flavors and the extraction they got. You can tell the grapes got really nice and ripe and developed very well."
FOOD
March 25, 1998 | LEILAH BERNSTEIN
Enjoy a selection of red and white wines from Niebaum-Coppola, including Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Chardonnay, Viognier and Zinfandel. Assorted breads and cheeses will be served. Saturday, 2 to 5 p.m. Epicurus Wine, 625 Montana Ave., Suite B, Santa Monica; (310) 395-1352. $4.
FOOD
April 11, 2001 | ROD SMITH, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Time flies when you're having fun watching a young wine industry evolve. It seems only yesterday that Napa Valley began asserting its terroir with bold Cabernet Sauvignons that captured the hearts and palates of wine lovers all over the world. In fact, it was more than 20 years ago. And even then, the next phases were already forming. A few wineries had begun to bottle Merlot. Incredibly, the wine world was largely skeptical.
NEWS
March 26, 2013 | By S. Irene Virbila
Jasmine Hirsch is officially director of sales and marketing at Hirsch Vineyards , the Sonoma Coast winery founded by her father, David, who bought the property in 1978. "I was born in 1979, so I've been around the vineyard my whole life," she said. She didn't run off to UC Davis to study winemaking, though. She went to the University of Pennsylvania, where she majored in Asian Studies with a concentration in Japanese. Eventually, she came back to wine. When I asked her what had caught her attention lately, she couldn't confine her enthusiasm to just one wine, but wanted to talk about two she tried recently.
FOOD
December 1, 2012 | By S. Irene Virbila, Los Angeles Times
  In Bordeaux, Cabernet Franc plays second fiddle, adding a touch of spice to Cabernet Sauvignon blends. But in the Loire Valley, it shines on its own in Chinon and Bourgueil. Here's a lovely Chinon from Château de Coulaine, an estate that dates to 1300. Etienne de Bonnaventure farms his Chinon vineyards organically and vinifies his wines simply and naturally using indigenous yeasts. The wine is a rich ruby red, its intense dark berry flavor laced with Chinon's characteristic spice and pepper.
FOOD
November 11, 2009 | S. Irene Virbila
Cabernet Franc is so identified with the Loire Valley in France that it's hard to remember that the grape is also much loved in the Veneto. Just tasted: the 2007 Montecchia "Godimondo." This is one smooth Cabernet Franc from a family whose history in the area goes way back -- as in the 10th century in Venice. It has all the spiciness and earthy qualities you'd expect, along with deep, bright-flavored fruit. A truly delicious bottle, perfect for a roast chicken or duck, a chicken fricassee or pasta with sausage or chicken livers.
FOOD
September 9, 2009 | S. Irene Virbila
Catherine and Pierre Breton make some of the finest Bourgueils I've ever tasted, and they make them at several levels. This one is called Trinch!, the French word for the sound of two glasses clinking together. It's a good name for a Cabernet Franc that is so accessible and easy-drinking. Made from grapes that are grown biodynamically, the 2008 Trinch! exudes youthful Cabernet Franc character and Loire Valley terroir. Vibrant with pepper and smoke and ripe berry flavors, it's best served slightly chilled in this weather.
FOOD
April 30, 2008 | Patrick J. Comiskey, Special to The Times
SOMETIMES the gallery of Bordeaux varieties resembles a dynamic trio of comic-book heroes: Cabernet Sauvignon is the beefy, muscle-bound brute -- Lord of the Medoc, as well as of Napa Valley and points beyond. Merlot is rather willowy by comparison but pleasingly so, a relative lightweight that gets by on finesse, sometimes at the expense of character.
FOOD
March 28, 2007 | S. Irene Virbila
Cabernet Franc is traditionally a blending grape in Bordeaux, but in the Loire Valley, in Chinon and Bourgeuil, it comes into its own producing supple wines with a dose of black pepper and spice. California winemakers never seem to have taken to the grape. But John Skupny, who started Lang & Reed winery with his family just more than 10 years ago, thought he'd try his hand at making a Cabernet Franc from grapes grown in Rutherford's western bench. He makes two, actually: this one, which is released a year after it's made, and an age-worthy one called Premier Etage.
FOOD
April 30, 2008 | Patrick J. Comiskey, Special to The Times
SOMETIMES the gallery of Bordeaux varieties resembles a dynamic trio of comic-book heroes: Cabernet Sauvignon is the beefy, muscle-bound brute -- Lord of the Medoc, as well as of Napa Valley and points beyond. Merlot is rather willowy by comparison but pleasingly so, a relative lightweight that gets by on finesse, sometimes at the expense of character.
FOOD
December 14, 2005 | S. Irene Virbila
A classic Bordeaux blend of Cabernet, Merlot and a little Cabernet Franc, Aia comes from Miner Family Vineyards in Napa Valley. For a Napa Valley Cabernet of this quality, it's a steal. It has everything going for it -- a mouthful of berries and spice, a touch of French oak and smooth, ripe tannins. A great bottle for the holiday table that both wine aficionados and novices can get behind. It should suit a standing rib roast or the Christmas goose as well as a terrific burger.
FOOD
May 19, 2004 | Tara Weingarten, Special to The Times
Delia VIADER loves pushing the oenological envelope. She points to her newest red wine, "V," and dares imbibers to guess which grape is its dominant component. If you know about Viader, the wine, not the woman, you know that it is one of the vaunted Napa Valley cult Cabernet Sauvignons. But "V" has just a bit of Cabernet Sauvignon in the mix. Instead, its deep purple color and serious tannins derive primarily from Petit Verdot.
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