Hello friends. We have the new vintage today of one of our most popular private-label wines of last year: the sublime, earthy Cabernet Franc from Bacchus Vineyard:
We no longer republish the full history/availability/explanation of Full Pull & Friends with each of these offers, but we now have a page on our website displaying all that info. As you’ll see on that page, eight of the first thirteen FP&F wines are now sold out. Of those with remaining stock, the 2012 Merlot Klipsun Vineyard is the most likely to disappear soon. If you see any wines on that still-available list that pique your interest, please respond to this e-mail with the wine and the number of bottles you’re looking for, and we’ll enter those orders manually.
Now then, some details on this wine. This bottling comes from a partner winery we’ve worked with on six previous FP&F occasions. We’ve offered sixteen of their main-label wines, representing almost every wine they’ve produced in their existence. This is an outstanding winery, with a wonderful, skilled winemaker at the helm.
And then there’s the vineyard. The majority of single-vineyard Francs in Washington seem to come from Weinbau Vineyard on the Wahluke Slope, and they can be outstanding. It’s fascinating, however, to taste terroir-expressive versions from other vineyards as well (Tranche’s Franc from Blue Mountain Vineyard, for example, has been extremely well-received by our list members). Our version today comes entirely from Bacchus Vineyard, a site probably best known for providing the backbone to some of the finest Cabernet Sauvignons in the state (Abeja Reserve comes to mind).
But it’s also a stellar site for Franc. The Franc block was planted in 1997 on sandy/silty loam with pockets of clay. It’s managed by Kent Waliser and Derek Way (both long time Full Pull list members, as it happens). Derek mentioned that he enjoys working with winemakers who want Cab Franc to taste like Cab Franc: “If we choose certain rows, and intentionally leave a certain crop load and fruit exposure, we can maintain those characteristic intrinsic to Cab Franc.”
Without question, we want our Cab Franc to taste like Cab Franc. What does that mean in Washington? Well, we occupy a lovely middle ground. We’re not the cool Loire Valley, so we’re not going to produce super-vegetal, 12.2%-alc Chinon. But on the flip side, we’re also not going to let Franc get so ripe that it expresses itself only as a half-assed version of Cabernet Sauvignon. That middle ground is fascinating, because it can lead to aromas and flavors that are both ripe and green. That’s what we see with our version today. I’m thinking of poblano pepper. Brambles. Spicy greens like arugula or watercress. Really delicious flavors that are completely unique to Franc.
For this vintage, we used one new barrel and one neutral barrel, and the wine clocks in at 14.7% listed alc. It really does feel like a Goldilocks version of Franc, with dark rich fruits, dark flowers like violets, and plenty of spicy greens. The fruit and earth elements are beautifully balanced, and there is a real insistent earthiness that belies the warm vintage. The mouthfeel is generous and supple, the signature classiness of this particular winemaker. Tannins are fine-grained, ripe and delicious, integrating nicely and offering a finishing lick of espresso. Because of Franc’s unique flavors, it pairs with all sorts of wonderful autumn meals; everything from braised short ribs with mustard greens to a split pea soup studded with shredded ham hock.
Please limit order requests to 12 bottles, and we’ll do our best to fulfill all requests. The wine is in the warehouse and ready for immediate pickup or shipping during the next temperature-appropriate shipping window.