4th Annual International Cabernet Franc Wine Competition. Registration now open!

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2023 registration can be found at


Who is this event for? For the 4th Annual Cabernet Franc Celebration, we have opened it up to both domestic and international producers of Cabernet Franc. Last year we had 12 states and four countries participating in the event representing some 70+ wines. Also it is for both those producing a Cabernet Franc varietal wine and for blends being 50% or higher with Cabernet Franc.

Why hold this event? It is to show the uniqueness and versatility of Cabernet Franc. To celebrate the wine as so much more than a blending grape. As Steven Kent Mirassou stated “Cabernet Franc, in its purest form, is all about sex. From the silkiness of its texture, to the exoticism of its aromas; from the raciness of its acidity to its emotion-prodding “it-ness”, Cabernet Franc is terrifyingly and wonderfully naughty”. Cabernet Franc has adapted and transformed its personality from Chile, France, Canada, the east coast of the US, the Michigan peninsula, the Midwest and the west coast of the US.

How will the competition be judged? The event will be a blind tasting using the “Danish System”, sometimes called the group method. Unique to this event, two separate judging stations will be set up. The first will comprise of Professional Judges and the second being the People’s Choice Judges (serious consumers). Each set of Judges will award medals and award Best of Class and Best of Show based on price categories of wines (5).

Who are the judges? Tom Bender has agreed once again to head up the Professional Judging Panel(s). Tom has headed up the California Sierra Foothill Competition for over 35 years, served on California State Fair Judges, is a well-known writer for various wine magazines and teaches at a local college. Other judges include Mike Dunne retired food editor, wine columnist for the Sacramento Bee, distinguished judge at San Francisco Chronicle and other events, Fran Cunniffe a DipWSET and certified Sommelier, Tana Cole winemaker from Sonoma Valley & Lodi, Jim Denham proprietor of The Wine Steward, former winemaker and educator, and WSET I, II and III individuals. People Choice’s Judges are astute individuals with years of experience and collectors including well known wine writer Elizabeth Smith, PhD. All judges are prepared with extensive documentation and profiles on Cabernet Franc’s characteristics from various geographic areas.

Benefits for wineries participating? National exposure from California Wines and Wineries website which will run a full feature article on those receiving Best of Class and Best of Show (domestic and international). The story will also be sent to 70+ blogs for reposting and all social media for a reach of over 400,000. Additionally it will be submitted to two magazines with a reach of an additional 500,000 readership. The Best of Show winners will also be featured on the Cabernet Franc Day site, a Facebook blog and a podcast featured by Exploring the Wine Glass. Klearcut Media (Texas) has been invited to be on site to video graph the event for public relations for Copper Valley GC and Town Center.

Where is the event being held? It is being held at the recently remodeled Copper Valley Clubhouse in Copperopolis, California (Sierra foothills) March 29th, 2023 in the Grandview Room.

Questions? Email mkellywine@gmail.com


4 thoughts on “4th Annual International Cabernet Franc Wine Competition. Registration now open!

    Pete Conrad said:
    November 28, 2022 at 11:50 pm

    Will there be a public event and or tasting?


      mkellywine responded:
      November 29, 2022 at 1:25 am

      Pete, Let me provide some clarification. The wine judging is a closed event. Two public events follow: One on April 15th and one on April 22nd. The April 15th there are two sessions, one from 11:30 am to 2 pm and one from 2:30 pm to 5 pm. This is the wine stroll with the last years Best of Class (or runner ups) coming to pour their Cab Franc’s. Appetizers will be on hand. The cost has yet to be set and both sessions will be sold out once annouced in February. The event on April 22nd a gourmet dinner with four Cabernet Franc’s featured from various areas. Annoucement with details will also be in February. Hope that helps.


    Justin Black said:
    March 9, 2023 at 5:11 am

    Any chance registration will be extended?


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