Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Longrow Red 2018, Cabernet Franc

Longrow Red, 11 years old, Cabernet Franc finish, 55.9% A+

9 years in bourbon, finished for two years in Cabernet Franc Barriques from the De Torren Private Cellar in Stellenbosch, South Africa. 9000 bottles, bottled on 23rd January 2018. Less than 100 casks of Longrow are filled each year making every bottle of Longrow a limited release. Cherish these releases!

IMG_4227Nose - Restrained sweetness, raspberry jam, quite flinty at first. It's quite an aggressive peat  (remembering that this is only 11 years old), there's some gunpowder - quite Ledaig-like here. Underneath that a bedrock of softer Campbeltown peat and a very light fruity funk. There is something a little clumsy in the nose though, a raw cereal tone, although it improves with time and could be because the bottle is new open.

Body - Sweeter now, with ripe plum, cream, fizzers and engine oil. The fruit is most developed in the initial delivery, giving way to ice cream wafers and juniper. The wine cask builds as does the sweetness and funky peat. Sour fruit and red wine with water, but much gentler and a richer experience.

Finish - Fizzing with jammy dodgers (lots of biscuit), and lots of cream (texture and flavour) at the end, with liquorice Sichuan peppercorns and engine oil.

Expectations are high for this, and it is a quite challenging Longrow in terms of peat levels and youth. Time and water do wonders for the experience, which also brings out the wine cask a lot more. This is good, the delivery is particular delicious, but it's a fair distance from last year's Malbec.

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