Posted by Clive on Tuesday, October 13, 2009
While it is a departure from the blog’s current series of reviewing non-traditional varietals, for my debut on The Oregon Wine Blog, I wanted to review a Washington wine that’s made on my side of the Cascades, at Woodinville’s Di Stefano Winery. Woodinville is just a short drive from Seattle, and is home to some of Washington’s best wineries - and certainly some of my favorites. It would be a misnomer to call Woodinville a wine region, as all of the wineries grow their grapes in the much warmer climes of Eastern Washington, but Woodinville is home to more than 45 wineries.
Di Stefano sources grapes from the Columbia and Yakima Valleys and they’ve been making wines there since 1993. The 2004 Sogno is Di Stefano’s Cabernet Franc and is 91% Cabernet Franc and 9% Cabernet Sauvignon. I think Cabernet Franc is a vastly underrated varietal, and while I never tire of drinking Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot, I confess I’d like find a Washington Cab Franc with a bit more regularity.
Let’s get down to drinking, shall we? The wine is a beautiful dark ruby in color, with a nose of cherries and smoke. We drank this wine over the course of a night, and it initially seemed to lack the complexity you’d hope for in a Cab Franc. Later in the evening, the wine really opened up and it was quite a treat. It was very earthy, with ripe berry flavors and spicy pepper notes. The wine was very smooth - almost surprisingly so for a Cabernet Franc - with a medium body and well-balanced tannins.
Like many wines at grocers this time of year, this wine can be found for a steal at under $20 a bottle. I’d recommend this Cab Franc as well as the Di Stefano Meritage of the same vintage. I’ve not been to the Di Stefano tasting room but with quality wines like this I see a trip in my near future.
I’m excited to be a part of The Oregon Wine Blog, and I look forward to bringing you more on the wonderful wines of Washington, whether its Walla Walla, Yakima or right up the street in Woodinville.