2017 Cabernet Franc
Southern Oregon, OR
Leah Jørgensen Cellars
What we love
This is a big, lush version of Cabernet Franc. It’s also fascinating, but so approachable and easy to like, and it smells absolutely beautiful. Blackberries, ripe cherries and herbs, with a stunning perfume of violets, tobacco and spice. A really great wine with lots of texture and complexity – it’s as serious as it is delicious.
About this Wine
Winemakers like Leah Jørgensen are part of a turning tide in Oregon, as new faces buck tradition and embrace new varietals and experimental, small-batch winemaking. She’s a Rockstar and so are her wines.
This Cab Franc is outstanding. It begins with the lovely perfumed notes, expressive, fresh, bright, vibrant – always with pretty floral aromas, sweet fruit and spice. On the palate, this is a dry wine with ripe fruit flavors of black cherries, black currants, and grilled peach, then meanders to cherry tobacco, anise, clove and black pepper, with its typical savory element of roasted pepper. It’s rich with firm tannins on the finish, yet elegant and balanced. I can’t wait for you to try it!
Winemaking: Fermentation commenced at 55° F so as to have a slow, steady fermentation, with manual punch downs twice daily. The wine was aged in mostly neutral French oak barrels, along with some stainless steel, to tone down the intensity from the skin and wood tannins. A slow, steady malo-lactic fermentation completed in three months. The wine was racked, blended, then filtered prior to bottling.
100% Cabernet Franc | 14.0% alc | 295 cases made.
Leah Jørgensen Cellars
Leah Jørgensen describes her wines as “under the radar.” This is ironic, considering her winery was named “The Winery to Watch” in 2014 by Wine Press Northwest and the “Winemaker to Watch” in 2015 by the San Francisco Chronicle.
Leah’s wines have personality. Her wines are classic, French in style, feminine and elegant, yet still strong – just like their maker. She’s also humble. Jørgensen Cellars has already garnered serious attention and while every nod is well-deserved, Leah seems like she’s not quite convinced her name should be mentioned alongside other notable winemakers. Understandable; after all, who isn’t their own harshest critic?
Leah is the perfect balance of strength and beauty. While she personally embodies those qualities, one glance at her label and one sip of her wine and you can see she is making a distinctive stamp on the industry.
When considering launching her own label, Leah – by then a veteran of the Pacific Northwest wine industry – did not want to simply join the Willamette Pinot Noir chorus. “How do I make my mark?” Leah asked herself. “And I knew I wanted to do something Loire-focused.”
During her tenure at Louis Dressner, one of the top importers of naturally made European wine, Leah fell head-over-heels for the natural reds of the Loire Valley. “I’m much more interested in the Loire Valley. Elegance, earthiness, and etherealness come from the wines of Chinon, Bourguiel, Saumur, Touraine, Sancerre, Anjou, and so on. From aromatic whites to pretty rosés, austere reds, and perfect crémant bubbles – the signature characteristic of all Loire wines is bright acidity – the perfect complement with food.”
In southern Oregon’s Rogue and Applegate valleys, Leah has found her calling with Cabernet Franc, the signature red grape of France’s Loire Valley. Though the Jørgensen wines have plenty of the Loire’s signature savoriness, they’re not the green pepper-bomb Cab Francs often seen in the New World.
In addition to producing boutique wines in the style of the Loire Valley, she keeps balance in her life by coaching high school lacrosse and serving wine at Corkscrew Wine Bar in Sellwood. On top of all those hats, she is finishing her studies in Holistic Nutrition at the Wellspring School for Healing Arts.
After talking with Leah, I totally understand the buzz linked to her brand. Her wines are geeky enough to appeal to sommeliers, but so grounded and food friendly that they should attract all sorts of wine fans. To boot, her prices make these bottles a bargain. Interested in trying these Oregon beauties? Help is one Add To Cart click away!
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