2022 L’Autre Côte Cabernet Franc Blanc – Unique and Definitely Delicious

Posted on


A new mini-trend is emerging in the world of Cabernet Franc. It has been developing over the last twenty years with Leah Jorgensen Cellars in Oregon being one of the first to do a white Cabernet Franc wine. But others have joined the ranks of the daring entrepreneurs, East Coast wineries Bedell Cellars and Corey Creek Tap Room. Even Michigan has supplied a Cabernet Franc from 2 Lads Winery in the Upper Peninsula. Not to be left out, Washington with Jaine Wines Blanc de Cabernet Franc has entered into the fray. Even the conservative Napa Valley features Mira Winery with their Estate Franc Blanc.

Two weeks ago I met with Steven Mirassou to taste and discuss his new venture with Cabernet Franc Blanc. Then again this week, enjoyed the wine with some unique appetizers of nuts, cheeses and foods preparing for a dinner featuring this wine.

So what is Cabernet Franc Blanc?  It uses the known Cabernet Franc grape, but is gently pressed with or without whole cluster grapes, to keep most of the typical varietal character of Cabernet Franc with savvy herbal notes with a smidge of earthiness. It is different than its cousin red Cabernet Franc with less red fruit characteristics and typically exudes white peach, soft grapefruit, non-sweet apricot, nectarine and a host of herbal notes. The herbal notes include pepper, white tea leaf, chamomile tea and tarragon are often noted. It typically brings bright acidity with freshness and a crisp clean mouth fill. Other Secondary flavors may be found ranging of notes of pyrazines, asparagus, green pea, mint, cantaloupe and crush rocks. The finish is long lasting with cedar, salinity and Sauvignon Blanc “citrus notes” concluding the experience.

The Winery – L’Autre Côte

Steven Kent Mirassou providing his traditional award winning style and experience from his Cabernet Sauvignon and red Cabernet Franc’s has embarked on this new journey with this release coming out in March, 2023. Here is a past link to his red Cabernet Franc winning Best of Class:


Venturing into this new “blanc” wine is something he has been contemplating for some time and in 2022 set out to provide his take with a white Cabernet Franc. The goal to get the fruit to the winery immediately and to get it pressed. Fast, gentle whole cluster press and no soaking. Put into the fermenter at 49 degrees it took almost a month to bring the wine to a completely dry quality.

The Wine – 2022 L’Autre Côte Cabernet Franc Blanc

First, if you are a red Cabernet Franc lover, you will find tasting this wine a mind-challenging experience. For me it certainly was! First on the eyes, it is difficult to visualize and comprehend a Cabernet Franc Blanc!  Secondly when smelling it very little of the typical red fruit qualities waft into the senses. Then the first sip, you are startled that this is a Cabernet Franc with little red fruit tastes.  Now after closing one’s eyes and sipping many times, once you can calm your uncomfortableness, an entirely new world opens up.

The wine on the eyes is a clear elixir with almost “no coloring”. On the nose fresh floral fragrances and a almond are noted. Once on the palate the magic appears with honeydew melon, white peach, mellow apricot and a sweet grapefruit. The finish provides a definite crispness of citrus notes, but still subdued. A very complex finish with a Yin-Yang struggle and contentment of a red Cabernet Franc verses a white Cabernet Franc. In this wine they gracefully co-exist and accentuate the unique flavors of the juice.

Steven’s goal for this wine was straightforward “…..I wanted Cab Franc Blanc to be a white, crisp and pure with a flavor profile that makes for a delicious and fascinating wine. And I think that is exactly what we got”.

Perhaps we are on the eve of the new white Summer wine, challenging Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc for our consideration, admiration and patio sipping enjoyment.  I know at least several folks who were at the tasting, will be adding this to their cellars!






Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s