With some wines, it pays to be patient. Despite what many wine critics will tell you, it’s hard to know with any certainty how a wine will develop in the bottle. When a critic writes, “Drink now through 2025” that’s just a predication. Not that it might not be an educated guess.
Some wineries have track records of producing wines that age and develop gracefully over a period of decades. Then again, not every wine will do so. Even those from the best wineries in the world.
Why do I bring this up? It’s all about our wine of the week: Macari Vineyards 2010 Cabernet Franc.
I first tasted it in late 2014, not long after it won a gold medal and “Best in Class” for red wines at the 2014 New York Wine & Food Classic. I’m not one to be influenced by medals and awards, but I still wanted to taste the wine that was chosen as the best red in the state by that competition’s judges.
Macari always does a nice job with cabernet franc, but I didn’t love this wine the first time I tasted it. The fruit was a bit candied, the tannins and oak a bit too forward. I wouldn’t call it disjointed or angular — but it was definitely a bit tense and uptight.
A year later, however, it’s a completely different wine with ripe raspberry and blackberry fruit qualities as well as licorice and dried herb accents. It’s still a full-bodied, concentrated wine, but the edges have softened and it has found its balance. It’s at once chewy and soft with a nice bit of acidity to keep it lively as it lingers on your palate.
Where will this wine be a year or 10 years from now? I don’t really know. But my guess is that it will continue to lose some of the overtly fruity character and develop more earthy, licorice-herb notes.
It sells for $35 in Macari’s Mattituck (150 Bergen Ave.) and Cutchogue (24385 Main Road) tasting rooms.