92 Points - Daniel Rogov
Platinum Medal - Critics Challenge
Gold Medal - New World International Wine Competition
Cabernet Franc comes from two distinctly different areas of France: The Loire Valley, where it tends to make a fairly light, rustic yet elegant wine, and Bordeaux, where it is often blended with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, and occasionally given the starring role in certain Right-Bank wines such as the famous Cheval Blanc. In Bordeaux Cab Franc tends to be bigger, fuller, and more similar to Cabernet Sauvignon. Today’s offering, from the relatively cool East side of Napa Valley, offers a nice balance between these two styles; it is low in alcohol, yet still possesses good body and richness.
Hagafen is a small, family-owned winery that has quietly been making lovely wines in the Southeast corner of Napa for 30 years. After taking a break for several years from Cabernet Franc, it is back in 2007, and, if this vintage is any indication, it was a great decision to bring it back. The 2007 Cabernet Franc is deep garnet in color, with a beautiful nose of black cherry, potpourri, black currant, mocha, slate and rose petal. This nose wonderfully expresses Cabernet Franc’s herbal notes. The palate is rich, yet without being full bodied, and shows loads of black cherry, with a hint of pepper and a lovely floral, spicy note. Firm tannin and plenty of acidity result in a finish that lingers wonderfully in the mouth.
Hagafen has done a wonderful job of balancing its rustic side with plenty of fruit, resulting in a wine more complex and interesting than many Napa wines at twice the price. At just 13.5% alcohol, with great acidity, this wine offers a huge range of potential food pairings, and won’t overpower delicately flavored dishes. This is the perfect wine to have on hand when you are in the mood for something a little different that will accompany any meal gracefully.
Varietal: 96% Cab Franc, 4% Merlot
Appellation: Napa Valley
Sugar: 22.8 Brix at harvest
Acid: 5.7 g/L
Hagafen Cellars is located in the Napa Valley, in the heart of California's premier wine grape region. Less than a mile south of the famed Stags leap District and twenty yards from the Oak Knoll District--Napa's newest and most exciting of American Viticultural Areas--our well-drained soil is ideal for the growth and production of ripe and rich, intensely fruity small lot estate bottled wines. Owned and operated by Irit and Ernie Weir, the winery was founded in 1979, and the first commercially released vintage was harvested in 1980. In the ensuing years, we have grown from a small partnership producing wine with grapes from Winery Lake Vineyard, then owned by Rene DiRosa, to a well-established wine company whose wines are distributed throughout North America and overseas. Since 1980 our wines have been served on numerous occasions at the White House to visiting foreign dignitaries. The cornerstone of our lives are the Silverado Trail winery and tasting room and our two estate vineyards in the eastern benchland of the Napa Valley.
Learn more at www.hagafen.com.