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Canada’s Best Wines: Cabernet Franc

Canada's Best Wines: Cabernet Franc

Cabernet Franc is finally having its long overdue moment in Canada.

It has traditionally been blended to add freshness and perfume to red Bordeaux blends. Now it is becoming popular as a single varietal wine, with expressive floral aromas, a refreshing herbal lift and balanced acidity not always found in other reds. Cabernet Franc is one of the easiest vitis vinifera grapes to cultivate, while Cabernet Sauvignon can be difficult to ripen fully, Merlot is sensitive to winter cold, and Pinot Noir is just plain finicky. Largely as a result, Cabernet Franc is the most planted red in Ontario and fourth-most-planted red in British Columbia, with tiny amounts grown in Nova Scotia and Quebec. Our judging revealed a strong showing from the Beamsville Bench, Twenty Mile Bench, Lincoln Lakeshore and Creek Shores sub-appellations, along with the Golden Mile and Skaha Bench sub-GIs (geographic indications) in the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia.—JANET DOROZYNSKI

Our Picks:

1. THIRTY BENCH SMALL LOT CABERNET FRANC 2017,

VQA Beamsville Bench Ont.

$75 | 94

3. PELLER ESTATES SIGNATURE SERIES CABERNET FRANC 2017,

VQA Four Mile Creek Ont.

$55|92

5. TRIUS SHOWCASE RED SHALE CABERNET FRANC 2017,

VQA Four Mile Creek Ont.

$55|92

7. TAWSE CABERNET FRANC GROWER’S BLEND 2017,

VQA Niagara Peninsula Ont.

$29|90

9. PAINTED ROCK CABERNET FRANC 2018, SKAHA BENCH,

VQA Okanagan Valley B.C.

$52|90

11. GRAY MONK ODYSSEY CABERNET FRANC 2016,

VQA Okanagan Valley B.C.

$40|90

13. PELLER ESTATES PRIVATE RESERVE CABERNET FRANC 2018,

VQA Niagara Peninsula Ont.

$24|90

15. 13TH STREET ESSENCE CABERNET FRANC 2018,

VQA Creek Shores Ont.

$50|89

Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc

2. MEGALOMANIAC RESERVE CABERNET FRANC 2017,

VQA Twenty Mile Bench Ont.

$50 | 93

4. STRATUS CABERNET FRANC 2017,

VQA Niagara on the Lake Ont.

$39|92

6. MEGALOMANIAC FRANK CABERNET FRANC 2018,

VQA Niagara Peninsula Ont.

$30|91

8. TAWSE LAUNDRY VINEYARD CABERNET FRANC 2016,

Lincoln Lakeshore Ont.

$35|90

10. CHATEAU DES CHARMES CABERNET FRANC ST. DAVID’S BENCH VINEYARD 2016,

VQA St. David’s Bench Ont.

$35 | 90

12. ORGANIZED CRIME CABERNET FRANC 2017,

VQA Beamsville Bench Ont.

$42|90

14. REDSTONE CABERNET FRANC REDSTONE VINEYARD 2017,

VQA Lincoln Lakeshore Ont.

$40|90

16. FOGOLAR CABERNET FRANC PICONE VINEYARD 2016,

VQA Vinemount Ridge Ont.

$44|89

Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
Best Wines Cabernet Franc
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