by Fred McMillin
A True Blue Franc
Austria's Blue Franc grape enjoyed its greatest success in the days of Napoleon Bonepart. Today it is arguably the most obscure red wine in America.
...by Jeff Prather, et. al. in "Northwest Wines"
Washington's Columbia Valley has a virtual monopoly on the Blue Franc in America, where it is known as the Lemberger. It is hardier than any other red-wine variety in Washington's cold climate. It makes a fresh, fruity red when the winemaker holds the oak down to a dull roar.
...from Bob Thompson's "Wine Atlas"
The wood in this Blue Franc is well below a roar. Ace winemaker Jed Steele gave it just a touch of French oak. The result is "a cross between Pinot Noir and Zinfandel." Others likened it to a heavy Beaujolais.
1996 Blue Franc, Washington State
About the label, Marie and Jed said: "It took us forever to get the label approved. The Feds were convinced that the use of a French franc note as the label indicated the French government endorsed this wine. That'll be the day!"
Why go to all that trouble? Notice that the hue is Blue. That is, the label is literally a Blue Franc!
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