Circumstance Cabernet Franc 2012 vs Oldenburg Cabernet Franc 2011



If you take Raats Cabernet Franc and historically the Cab-Franc led Cordoba Crescendo as reference points, then clearly the variety is capable of greatness under local conditions but on the whole it seems to be particularly tricky to work with, as two current releases demonstrate.

Circumstance Cabernet Franc 2012
Waterloof price: R155
Red fruit plus vague notes of earth, herbs and oak spice. Very ripe fruit, moderate acidity and a smooth, texture – very polished and as a result a bit characterless.

Score: 87/100.

Oldenburg Vineyards Cabernet Franc 2011
Price: R200
Black fruit, some leafiness and obvious oak. Full bodied yet the acidity is sharp and the tannins  hard – really quite awkward.

Score: 85/100.

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One Comment

  1. Pieter KrugerJune 5, 2014 at 11:00 amReply

    I think Cab Franc is really becoming the niche variety at the moment. Worldwide producers are showing examples that are very region specific and I think that is the appeal to the connoisseur. I do agree that Bruwer Raats is one of the top guys not only in SA but the world with this variety. As I realised when in London earlier this year at a South American masterclass run by Tim Aitken and on show was the top Cab Franc from across globe and wine writers in the audience asked Tim Aitken well where is Raats if we are showing the Best!

    If ever you want to try a a lovely example of Cab Franc try Hannay wines from the Elgin Valley in Grabouw. Cooler climate Loire style Cab Franc, clean precise and stylish. Think Saumur Champigny and Bourgeil from the Loire.

    Keep up the good work. Loving your work from the UK.

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