Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Wine of the Week: A 2006 California Cabernet Franc by Ironstone

Setting aside our usual political focus, let's turn to some new fruit of the vine. This week's wine is an Ironstone 2006 Cabernet Franc with a Lodi appellation.

Cab Franc isn't a top red grape variety like, say, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. But from what we've learned, it's an old grape variety that's widely grown and used in various red blends.

Ironstone's Cab Franc is a light-to-medium red wine. It's bright and oaky, perhaps a bit too oaky for us. The primary flavor reminds us of blackberries, though the berry taste is tart and the finish is short. We suspect the wine would stand up well to grilled meat or, say, a big juicy burger.

All in all, this Cab Franc is a pleasant wine at a reasonable price. (We bought our bottle for $9 at Ranch Acres in Tulsa.) But we have to say that we usually prefer a richer red than this, and there are plenty of such bottles on the shelves at good prices.

Finally, a word about Ironstone. We didn't know this vineyard, but we like their pitch. According to the label, Ironstone is a fourth-generation family operation that practices
"sustainable viticulture and farming." Ironstone is located in Murphys, California, a historic Gold Rush town.