We are proud this year to bring our readers a new topic and theme. Oh and another hashtag! We would like to introduce and present Food for Cabernet Franc which quickly becomes #Food4CabFranc.
Quite simply, Cabernet Franc is one of the most perfect red wine varietals on the planet for pairing for food. Why is that?
Cabernet Franc has a higher level of acidity than many red wines, lower alcohol level, is often very expressive of the soil on which it is grown and has excellent length with a hint of spiciness – that is to say that the taste of the wine lingers on after swallowing and leaves a nice zing in your mouth. All of which adds up to making a wine that has great taste properties to accompany food.
Cabernet Franc is a great wine for white meats, roast meats of all varieties. It also works well with a number of cheeses as well as having the flexibility to match stronger fish, particularly red fish like salmon. One of its other great advantages is its ability to pair with foods that contain some spice or chilli.
I learnt this lesson a pleasant but hard way! One time during a visit to our winery in Cardan, Bordeaux, I was invited to dinner with our vineyard team to an old castle owned and renovated by third generation successful winemakers in the Cotes de Castillon sub region of Bordeaux. I bought with me a bottle of our first ever 2010 Cabernet Franc Cloud9* just after it had been bottled and released. It was young and when I arrived and lined our bottle up along side my hosts’ line of well oaked Cabernet Sauvignon / Merlot mature heavyweights, I expected to be soundly put in my place.
As our Cabernet Franc was undoubtedly both the younger and lighter wine, it naturally would be the first to be drunk with the entrée course. I was even more scared when the food was served; a lightly chilli spiced but full flavoured fish soup. Both the soup and wine were excellent. And the combination of the two: incredible.
I learnt a couple of valuable lessons. One; that our team could make excellent wine – even in our first year – and two; that spice works beautifully with Cabernet Franc. Please be careful – that comment does not suggest that a vindaloo curry will be a good partner; we have to distinguish between the right amount of spice and damn hot!!
Our plan across the year is to build up a small library of Cabernet Franc friendly recipes – similar to what we have done with our #WineTips. To do this, we are going to reach out to the Wine Food world and get your help with your recipes that work with your favourite Cabernet Franc. We aim to publish one or two per quarter and to promote them across our media together with your name. And we would like your help please to create them.
The first one coming out shortly is from a Napa Valley California food wine lover and big Cabernet Franc fan, Troy Evans. Her writer’s name is Wine Girl (@Winegurl4u on Twitter) and she is happy to share her recipe for Shrimp Creole, reflecting her family history and heritage. Watch out for #Food4CabFranc coming here soon…
* In the USA, Paradise Rescued 100% Cabernet Franc is available as B1ockOne and is available via Foundations Marketing Group. Cloud9 Cabernet Franc is available online directly from Paradise Rescued in Australia.