Tuesday, March 30, 2010

This just in: Wine Enthusiast loves 90+ Cab Franc

The Wine Enthusiast's unreserved blog has taken a crack at unlocking the secrets of Cabernet Franc. Unsurprisingly, the results are a bit more uneven than Eric Asimov's. Here's my response in WE's preferred point format:

97 points - for actually making a factually correct blog entry about Cab Franc

57 points - for writing, "The Loire offers a fantastic value for those looking to taste some predominantly or solely Cab Franc wines; we’re talking $20-$50 for what are in some cases 90+ point wines."

75 points - for the title "Go Franc Yourself"

91 points - for listing top producers like Baudry, Raffault, Joguet and Amirault

83 points - for starting the article by name dropping top Bordeaux producers despite the fact Cab Franc is an afterthought in most of the region

OK, it's a well intentioned article. But telling people to drink Loire Cab Franc by describing it as 90+ points for not too much money is, well, exactly what I'd expect from a wine magazine. Chinons are generally the opposite of 'pointy' wines; if they score a 90 or higher it's usually by accident. This reductionist approach undoes all the good of the previous paragraph that offers very useful descriptors about the wine. They might as well have written,
The wines are generally quite aromatic with notes of 90+ and 90+ as well as varying degrees of charming 90+, 90+, 90+, 90+ and 90+ notes. They are typically more rustic in 90+ character, providing a great alternative to some of the overblown 95+ fruit bombs that saturate the market today.
Wine Enthusiast could have avoided my internet tough guy wrath simply by saying Loire reds can be very high quality for not too much money. In other words, they're good values. Let's leave points out of the equation--they're for Napa Cabs and classified growths from Bordeaux.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

This just in: Eric Asimov loves Cab Franc

Eric Asimov proved yet again he is a God among mortal wine critics with yet another face smashingly awesome column on Loire Cab Franc. Highlights of the article include every friggin' word in the whole damn thing. If you haven't read it, do it. Or else the Easter Bunny will bring you Parkerized wines instead of those delightful multicolored hard boiled eggs.

Incidentally, Asimov's favorite was one I also liked a lot, the 2007 Pied de la Butte. It also pleases me to know I have several other wines that made the top 10 resting peacefully in my cellar. Ah, Cab Franc, how I love thee!

Breaking Radio Silence

I'm baaaaaack! Well, not really. I'm not going to be as prolific or systematic. But I'll be posting sporadically as articles or wines inspire me.

I've decided I'll be posting tasting notes from CellarTracker (which will apparently morph into Grape Stories soon). Now, I have a bad habit of posting scores with my notes as an internal system to keep track of what I like. Plus most people score wines there, and the best way to bash or laud wines is to annihilate or bump their scores, respectively. So if you link back to CellarTracker, the scores will be there. But I won't post them on the blog.

So that's that.