Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

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Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Craig Winchell » Fri Aug 16, 2013 11:58 am

I recently released my 2010 Cab, which came in at low sugar (for CA), so I patterned the wine after what I remembered about Loire Cab Franc (but a bit riper than my memory) rather than Bordeaux/CA Cab. However, I have not tasted Loire CF in 29 years (none kosher), and the state of the art has presumably progressed there to somewhat riper than before, and with more character. If you were to be drinking a fantastic bottle of Loire Cab Franc, what would be the flavor and textural components and profiles, and how would it differ from your fantastic bottle of St. Em. or other Claret-modeled Cab Franc or Cab Sauv? All things being equal, which style do you prefer?
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby David M. Bueker » Fri Aug 16, 2013 1:08 pm

Ok, I'll bite.

I prefer Loire Cab Franc from top producers (e.g. Baudry, Breton, etc) to modern Bordeaux and Cal Cab. While Loire Cab Franc has gotten riper over the last several years (especially in the case of years such as 2009), it has not gotten to the thick, wood-dominated style that has overtaken Bordeaux.

For me good Loire Cab Franc still shows some level of herbal characteristic, as well as maintaining enough clarity to show a touch of (clean) earthiness even in youth. There's still plenty of fruit, especially now, but it's not the dark, purple fruits, and more to red cherry and perhaps black cherry range.
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Mark Lipton » Fri Aug 16, 2013 1:40 pm

David M. Bueker wrote:Ok, I'll bite.

I prefer Loire Cab Franc from top producers (e.g. Baudry, Breton, etc) to modern Bordeaux and Cal Cab. While Loire Cab Franc has gotten riper over the last several years (especially in the case of years such as 2009), it has not gotten to the thick, wood-dominated style that has overtaken Bordeaux.

For me good Loire Cab Franc still shows some level of herbal characteristic, as well as maintaining enough clarity to show a touch of (clean) earthiness even in youth. There's still plenty of fruit, especially now, but it's not the dark, purple fruits, and more to red cherry and perhaps black cherry range.


To add on to what David said, Loire CF typically has much greater acidic cut to it, so it is quite palate cleansing and food-friendly. It lacks the smoky quality I so often get in St Em CF, too, and has more mineral character to it.

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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Rahsaan » Fri Aug 16, 2013 3:22 pm

As mentioned above, the price is far from prohibitive. So go out and buy some Baudry and see what you think!
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Mark Lipton » Fri Aug 16, 2013 4:02 pm

Rahsaan wrote:As mentioned above, the price is far from prohibitive. So go out and buy some Baudry and see what you think!


Craig only drinks Kosher wine, Rahsaan. It's not the price that's prohibitive.

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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Rahsaan » Fri Aug 16, 2013 4:24 pm

Mark Lipton wrote:
Rahsaan wrote:As mentioned above, the price is far from prohibitive. So go out and buy some Baudry and see what you think!


Craig only drinks Kosher wine, Rahsaan. It's not the price that's prohibitive.

Mark Lipton


Oh!
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Craig Winchell » Fri Aug 16, 2013 5:25 pm

I can taste and spit, but it still seems like a waste. Now, if someone else were drinking it, I'd feel better about doing it. So anyway, that's pretty much like my 2010 Cab sounds, though it is Cab Sauv, not Cab Franc.
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Rahsaan » Sat Aug 17, 2013 12:24 am

Craig Winchell wrote:I can taste and spit, but it still seems like a waste..


Why? I've never understood that logic. If you enjoyed the wine, it served a good purpose and what was the waste.

When I'm drinking at home I taste and spit most of the bottle, except for when eating dinner. Because I still get some of the alcohol and the extra alcohol really serves no purpose and could be considered a waste itself!

It's been funny because my 2 year old son is a bit too young to process why daddy spits out his wine (he can barely process the concept of drinking wine). So he used to ask if I didn't like the wine, but then he started embracing the concept of spitting in general. Luckily that seems to have passed.
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Tim York » Sat Aug 17, 2013 3:59 am

Craig Winchell wrote:I can taste and spit, but it still seems like a waste. Now, if someone else were drinking it, I'd feel better about doing it. So anyway, that's pretty much like my 2010 Cab sounds, though it is Cab Sauv, not Cab Franc.


Craig, I don't understand the logic but from a different point of view. Why are you allowed to enjoy the non-Kosher wine if you don't swallow it :? ? It reminds me a bit of the very Catholic King Baudouin of Belgium who abdicated for one day in order to avoid giving royal assent to a pro-abortion act of parliament.
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Craig Winchell » Sun Aug 18, 2013 2:04 am

Tim, I cannot taste and spit for enjoyment, only for information. I have what is called a "heter" (which means permission) from a big name rabbi to be allowed to taste and spit from the perspective of gaining information necessary to my business. While it would normally not be allowed, it is in this case because of a number of things that individually would not carry enough weight to swing the permissibility, but collectively do. One of the things is that "ordinary wine", which is the category that nonkosher wine falls into nowadays, is only rabbinically prohibited, not biblically. Then there is not enough ingested during tasting to rise to the level of a useful quantity, so there is a basis for leniency. There are a few other things- just putting something in one's mouth does not necessarily mean one is liable for eating it (some allowed sucking on pebbles during fast days), and things like that.
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Tim York » Sun Aug 18, 2013 6:41 am

Craig Winchell wrote:Tim, I cannot taste and spit for enjoyment, only for information. I have what is called a "heter" (which means permission) from a big name rabbi to be allowed to taste and spit from the perspective of gaining information necessary to my business. While it would normally not be allowed, it is in this case because of a number of things that individually would not carry enough weight to swing the permissibility, but collectively do. One of the things is that "ordinary wine", which is the category that nonkosher wine falls into nowadays, is only rabbinically prohibited, not biblically. Then there is not enough ingested during tasting to rise to the level of a useful quantity, so there is a basis for leniency. There are a few other things- just putting something in one's mouth does not necessarily mean one is liable for eating it (some allowed sucking on pebbles during fast days), and things like that.


Craig, thanks for that explanation and congratulations to your rabbi for being pragmatic enough to give you a dispensation which helps you to carry on your business.
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Re: Characteristics of quality Loire Cab Franc

Postby Craig Winchell » Sun Aug 18, 2013 2:25 pm

Well, Tim, it's not a matter of congratulations to a pragmatic rabbi. In traditional Judaism, rabbis are not necessarily spiritual leaders, but rather are experts in Jewish law. If something not normally done is capable of being done without breaking Jewish law, the job of the rabbi is to assemble a jigsaw puzzle of common law facts which support it. For the liberal "streams" of Judaism, the rabbi is the pastor, ministering to his/her flock. Within orthodoxy, it is only expertise in Jewish law which determines qualifications for a rabbi, and at what level.
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