Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Glen Manor Cabernet Franc (2014)

Wines with a sense of place.  The particular place in question is located along the western flank of the Blue Ridge Mountains. At that spot, there are steep vineyards, where there is soil rich in variety but rocky. Amidst that rich and rocky soil, there are rows of vines, growing a range of varietals.  These grapes include the standard Rhone varietals, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Petit Verdot. They also include others such as Sauvignon Blanc, Petit Manseng and Nebbiolo. The grapes that grow there find themselves in the wines of Glen Manor Vineyards. 

The vineyards were started in 1995 by Alpheus White and his three sons. The vines were planted on a farm that had been within the family for five generations and over 100 years.  The first vines were Sauvignon Blanc, which were planted in 1995. In the following years, the Whites planted additional grapes, such as Merlot and Cabernet Franc.

I visited the Glen Manor Vineyards tasting room with my beautiful Angel.  We sampled a variety of the wines, including the St. Ruth, Vin Rouge, Hodder Hill and Sauvignon Blanc. We also tasted the Cabernet Franc and we liked that wine so much that we bought a bottle of the 2014 vintage to have at a later date.  

The Cabernet pours a crimson red, with deep almost burgundy tones in the center that fades to a lighter shade of red around the edges of the glass. The aromatic elements include strawberries, with other red fruit like cherries and raspberries. There is a little graphite in the nose of the wine as well.  

As for the taste of this wine, the elements include those red berries, especially strawberries, providing a certain jammy character with each sip. Other fruits are also present in the taste, such as plums and blueberries. The taste also featured some of the earthiness that was in the aroma, along with a slight hint of pepper in the background.

Overall, this is a very good Cabernet Franc, and it provides a good contrast to other Cabernet Franc wines that I have. For example, this wine was much brighter and fruitier than the Cabernet Franc from Elk Run Vineyards, which is located in Maryland.  While I like both wines, I think that the Glen Manor Cabernet Franc is a wine that could pair with a wider range of food, especially chicken and pork dishes, whereas the Elk Run Vineyards wine would pair better with beef dishes. Such differences even though the grapes are grown and the wines are produced about eighty or so miles away from each other.  Maybe that explains the emphasis on "terroir."  Probably not, but, until next time ...


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