Cabernet Franc

Cabernet Franc


  • France: Bordeaux, Loire Valley, Chinon
  • Italy: Friuli, Veneto, Tuscany (Bolgheri and Maremma)
  • Hungary: Villány and Szekszárd
  • Argentina: Mendoza
  • USA: Napa, Sonoma
  • Other: Canada, New Zealand, Australia


  • Decant it for 1 hour before serving and everyone will love a Cabernet Franc. Try it as a varietal Chinon wine or in a blend from Libournais. If you really want to impress your company or yourself, get the very famous (and expensive) Sassicaia.


  • Decant: 1 hour
  • 14 – 17 °C (59 – 64 °F)
  • Universal glass


  • Mediterranean food, Chinon, Steak, meat in general, salami, Indian, Mexican food, tuna, salmon, spaghetti and meatballs, burgers
  • Blue cheese, mozzarella, cheddar, manchega

Cabernet Franc is one of Bordeaux’s blending grapes and a parent grape to Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In France it is mainly grown in Libournais (Bordeaux’s Right Bank) and is blended with Merlot in well known villages like Pomerol and Saint-Emilion. As a varietal wine it is primarily produced in the Loire Valley in Chinon and Bourgueil.

Outside of France, Cabernet Franc is also found in Italy especially in Friuli, Veneto and Tuscany. In Tuscany it is part of the “Super Tuscan” blend in one of the best wines in the world – Sassicaia – which is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Sassicaia is an estate with history and one of the first one to produce “Super Tuscans”. It is located around the region of Bolgheri and has only recently gained its DOC name.

Cabernet Franc is also grown in Hungary, Canada, USA, Argentina and New Zealand.

Cabernet Franc has small grapes with thin skins which ripen around a week earlier than Cabernet Sauvignon and produces wines that are lighter in body, more supple and less acidic than Cabernet Sauvignon. One of its specific characteristics is the bell pepper notes which are present in a Cabernet Franc. Depending on the soil, the wines can have quite different taste profiles ranging from lighter to full body wines.

Cabernet Franc Regions

Cabernet Franc France Italy

Chinon AOC

  • Loire Valley
  • Can be blended with maximum 10% Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Taste profile: low to medium body, acidic but depending on the producer and vintage, the wine can also be full bodied with great potential for aging
  • Aging: up to 5-10 years
  • The taste can be quite different in this region due to the different types of soil
  • Sandy soils with gravel: wines can be consumed younger and are lighter
  • Limestone soils: more complex wines, tannic, increased minerality

Bolgheri Sassicaia DOC

  • Tuscany
  • Sassicaia is one of the first “Super Tuscan” wines which means that other non indigenous grapes are added to the blend.
  • Sassicaia is among the top best wines in the world
  • It comes with an expensive price tag
  • Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon are used in the Sassicaia wines
  • Taste profile: bold, complex

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Cabernet Franc, 2018

  • Producer: Damien Lorieux
  • Region: France, Loire Valley, Bourgueil
  • Blend: 100% Cabernet Franc
  • Alcohol content: 14%
  • Tasting notes: blueberries, black fruit mainly with hints of red fruit, mineral, tobacco, prominent tannins, medium body and finish