So said, Thomas Jefferson in 1816.   As I have written here before, Thomas Jefferson was a great lover of the finer things in life.  Art, wine, cognac, culinary delights, gardening, and the power of the written word. For he said to his friend Filippo Mazzei: 

“We could, in the United States, make as great a variety of wines as are made in Europe, not exactly the same kinds, but doubtless as good.”  ~ Thomas Jefferson
Thanks to Barboursville Vineyards, this last statement rings equally true.  In an hommage to our Third President, we opened the 2005 Barboursville Vineyards Cabernet Franc Reserve this past President’s Day.  It’s unfair to speak of this wine in the context of comparing it to similar wines hailing from California’s premiere wine growing regions. It is they who should be comparing themselves to Virginia!  

From the bottle, the wine is a lovely dark purple, with deep red reflections. The nose is wonderfully complex with ripe red fruits, sweet pipe tobacco, slight toast, lavendar, sandalwood and a lovely intense floral overtone. In the mouth, the wine is medium to full bodied, and the sweetness of the fruit is framed by refreshing acidity and soft oak notes. Balanced, fresh and delicious, each sip compels you to take another. This is the best Cabernet Franc I have ever tasted and a tremendous value, at $25.  Simply wonderful.  96 points!


2005 Barboursville Cabernet Franc Reserve

Served, as Jefferson may have done, alongside simple Cotolletta Milanese topped with fresh greens, ripe grape tomatoes, and perfect buffalo mozzarella.  

Cotoletta Milanese

Find out more about Monticello and Jefferson here:  Thomas Jefferson.   If you are interested in fine wine, great food, and American History, then I highly recommend this book; a fun, easy read.

Dinner at Mr. Jefferson’s : By Charles A. Cerami
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