A man can die much bolder with Brandy.  
 -The Beggar’s Opera

Being Franc

The offspring of the marriage of Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Franc is an expressive, aromatic, and delicately earthy varietal typically used by California vintners to add a hint of violets, a wisp of spice, or a touch of tobacco to their Bordeaux-style blends. In France, the varietal is more broadly planted, particularlly in the region of Libournais and the sub-region around the villages of Pomerol and St.Emillion, where it is known as Bouchet.


In Italy’s Friuli region Cabernet Franc reigns supreme as the most popular red varietal, and in Tuscany, where it is used as part of several renowned “Super Tuscan” blends, it is grown with thrice the frequency of Cabernet Sauvignon.

Lighter-bodied and less tannic than Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc offers more floral aromas and, on occasion, an earthy dried-herbal character. Other notable features include the ability to reflect the terroir of a vineyard with palatable particularity. When grown, for example, at higher altitudes, the grape will often express the minerality found in the rocky soil. This subtle hint of slate or graphite endows the otherwise delicate and floral varietal with the “stones” to stand up to the earthy flavors of, say, grilled meats or roasted root vegetables. Mountain-grown Cabernet Franc, therefore, is some of the most desirable.

Pisoni Vineyards

The Santa Lucia Highlands is one of the crown jewels of California viticulture, producing some of the state’s best cool climate Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Syrah. Over 200 years ago Spanish missionaries recognized the unique soil and climate and began planting grapevines in the area. Today, the appellation encompasses more than 6,000 acres of prime […]

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Qvevri Forevri

  Since the sixth millennium BCE superlative wine has been made with Qvevri (pronounced ‘kwevry’), those huge clay pots built to contain hundreds or even thousands of litres of liquid. The enormous vessels are filled with juice, sealed with beeswax, and buried in the earth to give the fermenting juice within a cool and stable […]

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