One is too many and a thousand isn’t enough… but, for those of you who enjoy a good Cabernet…
Since the beginning, StoneFly’s Cabernet Franc has been our signature vintage.
Stonefly’s signature vintage
Cabernet Franc has been grown throughout the Loire and Bordeaux region of France and in Italy since the earliest evidence of vineyards. Although California winemakers have used this varietal as a blending wine, it produces a distinctive, captivating and immensely enjoyable wine that should be understood on its own.
Cabernet Franc produces a delicate wine that can arouse a range of descriptors from its color to aroma to flavors, yet there are characteristics that coalesce into a personality you can look forward to. Ruby red in color, Cabernet Franc will cast highlights of garnet, violet or blue. Aromas inspire cherry, raspberry, licorice, menthol, red currant perfume, violets and allspice. Taste Cabernet Franc and your palate will retain rosemary, dark cherry, strawberry, mineral backnotes, dried herbs and chocolate. It is medium-bodied and can have hints of sweetness like brown sugar and molasses or sensuous touches of oak, cedar and tobacco.
Cabernet Franc is known to grow well in cooler climates as in Chinon, France or Southeast Napa, the home of StoneFly Vineyard. Cool growing climate allows slow maturation of the clusters. Slow maturation and long “hang time” yields flavors of fresh herbs and berries. Proper canopy management is crucial to avoid vegetative or herbaceous off-flavors. At StoneFly Vineyard, trellising, deleafing and cluster thinning practices deliver fruit with tannins delicately balanced with flavor characteristics.
StoneFly Cabernet Franc is hand-picked when the grapes are mature, have a high level of ripeness and the sugar is between 22.3 and 22.6. After fermentation, a culture is added to take the wine through 100% malolactic fermentation in seasoned two-year old French oak barrels. Minimal filtration is done during fermentation and the cap is punched down to maximize color and flavors. The wine is aged for nine months in the barrel and then another nine months after bottling.
Cabernet Franc is said to be the father of Cabernet Sauvignon! In the 16th century, it was common for a farmer to plant a red grape varietal beside a white grape varietal in the same vineyard. Cabernet Franc was growing alongside Sauvignon Blanc in the backwoods of France where they apparently crossbred spontaneously and became the parents of Cabernet Sauvignon. Researchers at UC Davis conducted DNA fingerprinting in 1994 that compared alleles (genes) of 51 vitis vinifera cultivars. Only Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc matched the alleles of Cabernet Sauvignon. The rest is history!
Waaaaaaay too many of these at the Bridgeport Inn in the 80’s…