Cabernet Franc. 2019. Manoir La Tete

Cabernet Franc. 2019. Manoir La Tete

Item #: U1021R2IF
Vintage: 2019
Varietal: Cabernet Franc
Vineyard/Appellation: Saumur, France
Color: Medium Ruby
Nose: Cherry
Palate: Cranberry, Mint
Finish: Medium Tannins
Rating: 97
Cellaring/Serving Suggestions: Now thru 2024/Fowl, Game, Vegetarian/13% Alcohol by Volume

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The original estate was built in 1649 in the central Loire appellation of Saumur. It is particularly known for the refreshing sparkling wines produced here made from Chenin Blanc and Sauvignon Blanc. It is also equally famous for the dashing reds crafted from Cabernet Franc.

Guillaume Reynouard purchased the property in 1995 and immediately began converting the vineyards to organic farming, earning his certification just three years later. He converted to biodynamic farming in 2010.

Cabernet Franc is one of the principle grape varieties in Bordeaux. It was named so because it was thought that it was a descendant of Cabernet Sauvignon. Later, DNA research showed it was actually a descendant of Merlot, but the name stuck. The grape produces a wine with similar characteristics as Cabernet Sauvignon, but in a lighter more fanciful style. It's that style that invited it to the Loire back in the 17th Century where it has flourished ever since. It is the go-to red in the Loire and accounts for a healthy portion of the appellations red grapes.

Its delicacy is its strength. Though not as bold as Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot, it still holds its own as an engaging grape as it does in the neighboring villages of Chinon and Bourgueil. Here, coming from 15 to 30 year-old vines, it has a more significant edge sporting its telltale cranberry fruit component, but with a touch of tart cherry and allspice. It sports a universal appeal matching with a roast chicken or veal osso buco.