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Top South American Cabernet Franc wines: Panel tasting results

Things are looking bright for South American Cabernet Franc, according to this report on 44 wines tasted by our three-strong expert panel. Published in Decanter's new October 2018 magazine issue, Premium subscribers can get exclusive online access to the full report and tasting notes below.

  • 44 wines tasted, with one rated Outstanding

  • ‘The enthusiasm for South American Cabernet Franc looks likely to continue’, concluded our tasting panel of Paz Levinson, Patricio Tapia & Dirceu Vianna Junior MW

Summary

With quality high, the tasters found notable stylistic differences – although the regional character of Cabernet Franc is yet to fully emerge, says Patricio Tapia


South American Cabernet Franc: know your vintages

Argentina

2017 A long, hot summer, yet a vintage of well-balanced reds.

2016 The coldest vintage in a decade. Fresh, light wines.

2015 A fresh vintage for those who harvested early. Riper reds if not.

2014 Low yields, but high acidity. Keep top wines in your cellar.

2013 The first of a series of cold vintages. Wines high in acidity.

2012 Frost caused low yields, but heat created very ripe reds.

Chile

2017 Hell in Chile. The hot weather caused severe wildfires and the wines show that heat.

2016 Very refined reds if harvested early.

2015 Another warm vintage. Succulent and concentrated reds.

2014 After initial frost, this vintage was moderate to hot.

2013 One of the coolest vintages of the decade. Refined reds.

2012 Warm and slightly humid year. Drink the wines now.[/breakout]


Top South American Cabernet Franc from the panel tasting:

 


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