For more than 30 years the Bridge Estate vineyard at Matawhero produced a Bordeaux blend of Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Easy observation revealed that it the Cabernet Franc which thrived the most in the Gisborne climate, ripening ahead of the other three varieties and achieving complete ripeness and a piquant depth of flavour. In many ways it was the Cabernet Franc which acted as the keystone to the blend.
Our last vintage at Bridge Estate convinced us to produce a straight Cabernet Franc, a wine with its roots in the Chinon region of the Loire, and tending to be known only to the Cognoscenti. To say we haven’t been disappointed is an understatement. It is a hugely characterful wine, with the berry fruit flavours of Cabernet Sauvignon, and the smokiness on the nose for which Cabernet Franc is recognised.
Following aging in mostly old (20 % new Oak) French and Hungarian Red Wine barrels for 14 months, the wine was bottled in June 2019. Defying any expectation such a young wine should be unapproachable at this stage, its tasting incredibly well even now, with well integrated acidity, like a wine old before its time.
Our winemaker has the last say: “It’s like Pinot Noir with balls”
Le Pont 2018 Cabernet Franc
TASTING NOTES: A hugely characterful wine, with the berry fruit flavours of Cabernet Sauvignon, and the smokiness on the nose for which Cabernet Franc is recognised.
GRAPE VARIETAL: Cabernet Franc.
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