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Château Franc-Cardinal, Francs Côtes de Bordeaux

Château Franc-Cardinal, Francs Côtes de Bordeaux

the red robes of Cardinal Frank

In French the colour of a wine is its robe, and there are few robes redder, or more expensive, than those of the grand Cru Classés of Bordeaux.  But there is an alternative, off-the-beaten-track Bordeaux, where winemakers working on smaller budgets in lesser-known appellations still make wonderful wine.
Francs Côtes de Bordeaux is the newest (1967) and smallest (450ha) AOC in Bordeaux.  It’s on the rise: some of the biggest names in the region are buying up land here, but Château Franc-Cardinal is long established.
Made from a typical right-bank Bordeaux blend of Merlot (72%), Cabernet Franc (24%) and Malbec (4%) in the underappreciated 2012 vintage (bad for left-bank Cabernet Sauvignon, good for right-bank Merlot), this is classic claret without the Classé pricetag.

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Available at £13.78 per bottle


Claret was designed to please the English palate; this is the wine for roast beef with all the trimmings, and Sunday lunches in general.  For a Wednesday evening, think bangers and mash, or pie and peas.  At the very least, nibble on nuts or cured meats; this wine was made for food.
The old “reds at room temperature” rule was written with claret in mind, so serve this at the full 18°C – pre-central-heating room temperature.  It definitely improved with air; if you buy some of this you should aim to decant it a couple of hours in advance.  With the pouches we’ve done that for you, of course!

about this wine

AppellationFrancs Côtes de Bordeaux AOC
Cabernet Franc
(click to find out more)
Château Franc-Cardinal
(click to find out more)

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