All of the shiny gold on the label of Domaine de la Chanteleuserie Bourgueil Alouettes 2010 caught my eye sitting on the wine shop shelf. But what really captured my interest was that it was a Cabernet Franc. Although it plays a large role as a blending grape, Cabernet Franc isn't seen too often especially in the States on its own. It is the signature red wine grape in the Loire Valley in France, and is a staple in bistros and wines bars throughout France. Recently winemakers in Italy, Napa Valley, and Long Island NY have made great strides with this grape that does admittedly have some limitations, but it can also shimmer with intense aromas, lush fruit and rustic spice.
Domaine Chanteleuserie has been in the Boucard family since 1822, currently Thierry Boucard along with his wife Christine, is the 7th generation of winemakers at Chanteleuserie. The vineyard Les Alouettes [translates as skylark] is known for producing the domaine’s affordable, “drink me now” Cabernet Franc Cuvee. Boucard believes in environmentally friendly practices, little or no chemicals are used, the grapes are hand-harvested and the wine is left unfiltered.
Cranberry garnet in colour, after decanting for about an hour aromas of pine forest and apple pie spices rose from the glass. Plush black current and baked cherry flavours were entwined with herbaceous rosemary in the fresh yet dense nearly full body. Luscious smoky peat expanded into earthy forest notes in the lengthy, scotch-like finish. With an approachable profusion of delectable fruit and rich earthy, smoky elements, this is a fantastic glass on its own or with dinner.
100% Cabernet FrancBourgueil/Loire
Mis en Bouteille a La Propriété [Estate Bottled]
Enjoy now thru 2015
*Rated 90 points by Wine Spectator