Vino: 2003 Craftsman Cabernet Franc

Vino: 2003 Craftsman Cabernet Franc

Oct 4, 2007

Name: 2003 Craftsman Cabernet Franc
Grape: Cabernet Franc
Region: Szekszard, Hungary
Price: $7.99 to $9.99

The votes are in and Kitchen readers prefer Old World, Red Wines this time of year. With that in mind this week's choice is from Hungary, a land that has been making wine for over 2000 years.

Prior to Soviet domination and communist rule, Hungary was a very important wine-growing region. In fact, it produces more wine and has more planted acres that it's better-known neighbor, Austria.

Like many other Eastern European countries with roots in viticulture and optimal wine growing climates, the fall of communism is opening the door for international wine sales. At the moment this area is making exciting wines but we don't know about them, so there are still many great deals to be found!

Cabernet Franc is a Bordeaux varietal and commonly one of the major components in Bordeaux blends. In the Loire Valley it is often bottled alone under the village names of "Chinon" or "Anjou".

Cabernet Franc is a "parent" grape to Cabernet Sauvignon, though much lighter in color and tannins. Depending on ripeness and growing region, Cabernet Franc can range from lush and juicy to green and vegetative. Though light tannins are always a distinctive quality, making this an excellent food pairing wine.

The 2003 Crafstman Cabernet Franc needed a little air at first, after a few minutes in the glass it showed beautiful cherry fruit with hints of tobacco spice. Light & zippy with interesting character, it was the perfect wine for fall.

Stores: Astor Wines & Spirits $9.99 (399 Lafayette @ 4th St.), Wine Library $7.99 (586 Morris Avenue, Springfield, NJ or online)

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