Archive | October, 2010

Frankly, its Franc…

29 Oct

InterVin just released its Silver Medal list – which will also be part of the next edition of VINES, if you’re curious. Personally, I always find award lists helpful, they are kind of like little directional arrows pointing you along the confusing route of choosing a bottle of wine. Like GPS, solar-powered pathway lights and diet plans – they can, of course, find you stumbling face first down a dead end road while eating only grapefruit for three weeks.

However, they can also get you out of Boston without getting shot, with your clothes not grass stained and your belly fully and heart healthy. You know what I’m saying? Probably not. The point is this… There are people who know a lot more about wine than me and by listening to the people whose professional opinions I trust, I can drink a lot of the great stuff.

This is especially true about the varietals I consider ‘risky’. Of course, all wines can go array in unmasterful hands, but some more quickly than others. To me, Cabernet Franc is one of those types of wine.

When done well, Cab Franc can be simply delightful. It’s kind of got that ‘fight’ in it, of a powerfully flavoured and dramatic wine trapped in a lighter-styled wine’s body. It adds something special to red blends, often used in Bordeaux-style blended wines alongside Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. It’s a great ‘shoulder season’ kind of wine, that plays inside the boundaries of a refreshing white and a deep, brooding red. It can be pepper-y, cassis-y, raspberry-y and tobacco-y. Most of all, it can be yummy.

On the flip side, it can fall flat. Peppery can turn to biting into a raw, green pepper. Cassis-y can turn into candied. Raspberry-y can disappear behind too much spice. Tobacco-y can turn to full out stick your head up a chimney.

That’s why I turn to the advice of the pros when it comes to this wine, because I love it when it’s done right and loathe it when it isn’t. Cab Franc is becoming more popular in Canada, which has the climate and soil to make excellent examples.

At InterVin, there were several silver medalists from our nation in this category, including recent VINES cover model – the Good Earth Food & Wine Co. 2008 Cabernet Franc from the Niagara Peninsula.

Check out the others from the list and maybe even try a few. There’s plenty of great Cab Franc’s out there, find someone who you trust to recommend a few.

Peace Offering…

28 Oct

It’s been so long, dear readers. I know it’s all my fault. I can’t blame BC for sucking the energy out of me, or the cold weather sapping inspiration, or even the Packers ridiculously close losses in recent weeks for shoving me in a corner, sulking and rocking back and forth. I’ve simply been caught up in this windstorm called life, but I have made a promise to write more often.

To counteract the eerie silence that has been The Corkscrew for so long – I present the following as my appeasement to the Wine Blog Gods.

This here, folks, is what everyone is after. I can’t tell you how many text messages I get from family and friends asking for exactly what this bottle delivers.

Rémy Pannier’s Anjou isn’t just affordable (but it is – LCBO#5967, $12.10). It isn’t just refreshing and balanced (but it is – with pear, apple and honeyed notes that would be outstanding with everything from hors d’oeuvres like crisps topped with goat cheese and cherry preserves to mains based on everything from the sea, oysters and lobsters especially). It isn’t just special and different (but it is – Chenin Blanc is approachable without being boring and overdone). It isn’t just from a popular, substantial wine growing country like France (but it is – from the AOC Anjou region of the Loire Valley that’s known for fantastic whites). It isn’t just an InterVin award winning bottle (but it is – and a best value one at that). It’s the whole package.

The best part? There’s more when this comes from. Take a look at the InterVin Best Values list and hunt them down. Trust me, this list is way more helpful than texting me.