Text Size:-+

1999 Cosentino Cabernet Franc, Napa

I know Cosentino wines mostly because of their blockbuster Zinfandels, Cigar Zin, and The Zin. They make a lot more wines (approximately 30) including this Cabernet Franc.

Mitch Cosentino is both the owner and winemaker, and talks a lot about two things: blending and punched cap fermentation, both of which he believes allow him to make distinguished wines of extremely high quality. He's certainly had enough time to practice, having started his winemaking career over 20 years ago in a rented space in Modesto, California. After moving to Napa and spending a few years selling his young grapes to larger producers, Mike struck out with his own label and hasn't looked back since.

Most wines are made in small production runs, in this case a bottling of about 900 cases. Here are Mitch's production notes about this wine:

Appellation: Napa Valley - St. Helena

Composition: 100% Cabernet Franc from St. Helena.

Winemaking: Most of the fruit was punch cap fermented in 1/2 ton bins for between 7 and 11 days. Each lot was barrel aged separately in both French and American oak. The lots were blended and racked once before bottling, unfined.

Not many people produce a straight Cab Franc in Napa, but after tasting this wine, I'm beginning to wish that more people did.

Tasting Notes:
Clearly an older wine, this one is colored a dark red that is headed towards brick. The nose is full of wonderful nasturtium and plum aromas, with an undercurrent of black cherry and sawdust. On the tongue the wine is velvety, with dusty tannins and a bergamot/Earl Grey component that swirls around the predominant flavors of cherry and woodsmoke. I'd give this wine about 2-3 years more before it starts to head downhill without extreme care.

Food Pairing:
I drank this bottle with some friends while eating cheese (specifically very old Gouda) and it complemented the nutty and salty flavours very well. From the perspective of a main dish, I would be tempted to try it with red-wine-braised duck legs with roasted pears and onions.

Overall Score: 8.5/9

How much?: $34

This wine is available for purchase through the winery, or at K&L.

Buy My Award-Winning Book!

small_final_covershot_dropshadow.jpg A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. 2015 Roederer Award Winner.Learn more.

Follow Me On:

Twitter Instagram Delectable Flipboard Pinterest

Most Recent Entries

Vinography Images: Unglamorous Work A Lesson in the Loss of Denis Malbec I'll Drink to That: Kimberly Prokoshyn of Rebelle Restaurant Wine News: What I'm Reading the Week of 6/19/16 Vinography Unboxed: Week of June 12, 2016 Warm Up: Richebourg I'll Drink to That: Jean-Nicolas Méo of Méo-Camuzet Vinography Images: It's Nice to be King It's Time for American Wineries to Grow Up I'll Drink to That: Joy Kull of La Villana Winery

Favorite Posts From the Archives

Wine Will Never Smell the Same Again: Luca Turin and the Science of Scent Forlorn Hope: The Remarkable Wines of Matthew Rorick Debating Robert Parker At His Invitation Passopisciaro Winery, Etna, Sicily: Current Releases Should We Care What Winemakers Say? The Sweet Taste of Freedom: Austria's Ruster Ausbruch Wines 2009 Burgundy Vintage According to Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Charles Banks: The New Man Behind Mayacamas Wine from the Caldera: The Incredible Viticulture of Santorini Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Chateau Rayas and the 2012 Vintage of Chateauneuf-du-Pape A Life Indomitable: The Wines of Casal Santa Maria, Portugal Bay Area Bordeaux: Tasting Santa Cruz Mountain Cabernets Forgotten Jewels: Reviving Chile's Old Vine Carignane The First-Timer's Guide to Les Trois Glorieuses of Hospices de Beaune

Archives by Month


Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson Wine Grapes The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson to cork or not to cork by George Taber reading between the vines by Terry Theise adventures on the wine route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud