Catoctin Breeze Vineyard 2015 Cabernet Franc

86 points

Ripe black and blue fruit -- everything from black cherry to blueberry to currant -- aromas are matched by barrel-born smoky campfire aromas that somewhat mask more subtle notes of singed vanilla bean and licorice-y herbs.

Broad and round on the palate, the vanilla is a bit more pronounced but there is enough ripe, concentrated fruit character to stand up to the vanilla and smoky, toasty oak flavors. Black cherry dominates the fruit bill and is accented by grilled woody herbs, cola and dark roast coffee. The tannins are nicely rounded, but still chewy and should afford this wine the opportunity to develop in bottle for some time.

Producer: Catoctin Breeze Vineyard
Region: Maryland
Blend: 100% Cabernet Franc
ABV: 13.8%
Price: $36

* Review sample provided by the winery

About Author

Lenn Thompson, a proud Pittsburgh, PA native, moved to Long Island more than a decade ago and quickly fell in love with the region’s dynamic and emerging wine community. A digital and content marketing and community professional by day, he founded in early 2004 to share his passion for the wines, beers and spirits of New York State. After running that site -- which became the premier source for independent New York wine commentary, reviews and news -- for 12 years, he launched in late 2016 to add the wines of Virginia, Maryland, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Vermont and beyond to his beat. Lenn currently serves as the wine columnist for The Suffolk Times weekly newspaper and is the former editor of the Long Island Wine Gazette. He contributes or has contributed to publications like Wine Enthusiast Magazine, Beverage Media, Edible Brooklyn, Edible East End and Edible Hudson Valley. Lenn served on the board of directors for Drink Local Wine, and is the creator and founder of TasteCamp, an annual regional wine immersion conference for writers and trade. An admitted riesling and cabernet franc fanatic, he’s intensely passionate about eating local and the many local wine regions of America. Lenn lives in Miller Place, NY with his wife Nena, son Jackson, daughter Anna and their dog, Casey Lemieux Thompson.

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