Roanoke Vineyards 2012 Gabby’s Cabernet Franc

Roanoke Vineyards 2012 Gabby’s Cabernet Franc ($43) shows the ripeness of the vintage, but is a standout for its elegant intensity and early complexity. A blend of cab franc grown in a part of Roanoke’s estate vineyard known as “Gabby’s rows” because Pisacano family patriarch Gabby Pisacano manages them along with 17% merlot and 1% petit verdot, it offers a spicy and slightly herbal – in a good way – nose with layers of sweet black cherry and blackberry with subtle but distinct minty-licorice notes and high-toned floral aromas. Pretty and fresh on the medium-bodied palate, mixed berries lead the way…