Leah Jørgensen Cellars 2013 Mae’s Vineyard Grand Reserve Cabernet Franc, Applegate Valley, $75
A product of Virginia, Leah Jorgensen was selling Loire Valley wines to restaurants and embassies in Washington, D.C., but an invite to Oregon Pinot Camp in 2004 changed her life. By 2011, she’d launched Leah Jorgensen Cellars. Mae’s Vineyard, owned and farmed organically near Jacksonville, Ore., by the Quady family, has been a critical piece of Jorgensen’s program, and this Cabernet Franc exudes class from start to finish. Production was limited to this cherished barrel of new French oak, and the 25 months helps develop enchanting florals of sweet herbs, blackberry, dark cherry and rose petals. There’s beautiful balance to the dark flavors of blueberry and cherry, which make for a silky, rich and long finish. It might be the most expensive expression of Cabernet Franc in the Northwest, yet it certainly ranks among the best. She suggests serving it with pan-seared trout with fennel, roast chicken with herbs, robust meat such as lamb and wild game, rich mushrooms dishes or cheese gratin.
Production: 22 cases