Lucchesi Vineyards and Winery is located in the Sierra Foothills. They have 20 acres under vine; planted to a wide selection of varietals that were found suitable for their terrain. The vineyard itself is a steeply terraced one, with southwestern exposure, maximizing the sunlight hours. I've come across an increasing number of wines from this region that are well crafted, enjoyable, and good values. Today I'll look at the Lucchesi Vineyards Cabernet Franc to see if it falls into that category. The Lucchesi Vineyards 2006 Cabernet Franc was sourced at their View Forever Vineyard. This offering has 5% Merlot blended in. It was aged in French oak (25% new) for 21 months. 278 cases were produced and the suggested retail price is $24.
Plum, berry pie and spice are on full display in the nose of this Cabernet Franc. Throughout the full bodied palate, there is a host of spices; clove, nutmeg, and white pepper, which all accompany the generous wallop of rich, fresh, dark berry fruit characteristics. Towards the end of the mid-palate, chocolate covered cherry notes emerge and carry forward through the long, memorable finish which also features earth, mineral, and black tea reference points. This wine has approachable tannins that give way with some air. Sufficient acidity frames this Franc. This offering will be a good match with hard cheeses, mushroom based dishes, or grilled meats.
I really enjoyed this wines combination of full flavored fruit, indicative of the Sierra Foothills and the true Cabernet Franc characteristics, such as a big nose that shine through. This offering is structured enough to lay down for several years. It's likely to improve in the short term (3-5 years) and drink well for several years after that.