Did you know that Cabernet Sauvignon is currently the most-planted wine grape in the world? [Believe it or not, just a few years ago that honor was claimed by the Spanish white variety called Airén. If you've never heard of it, you have lots of company.] These days, almost everywhere red wine is grown (especially in warmer regions), you'll find Cabernet in the vineyards.
Except in Missouri. Wine has been grown here for more than 160 years but Cabernet has seldom been planted. When it has been tried, it has almost always been abandoned in short order. We used to wonder why. Through the grapevine, we always heard that Cabernet could not survive the cold winters here and that, even if it did survive, the grapes would not ripen properly in our climate. For Missouri, Cabernet seemed to be a "no-go."
Then, about 8 years ago we visited the Virant Vineyard, which is located just 3 miles from Dutzow. It was planted during a "mini grape boom" in the 1980s on a hill overlooking the Missouri River Valley. At the top of the hill, we saw something surprising: a one-half acre block of Cabernet Sauvignon, still alive and apparently thriving at nearly 20 years old. Well, "thriving" might be a slight exaggeration because these vines had been neglected and urgently needed some TLC. But despite the neglect, amazingly, they were in decent shape.
After seeing those vines in the Virant Vineyard, we caught the Cabernet Bug. We convinced the owners to make some changes in the vineyard and to sell us the fruit. We researched clones, rootstocks, and cultural practices. In 2009, we planted about an acre of Cabernet Sauvignon and its parent vine, Cabernet Franc, in our own vineyard. We have since planted more of both Cabs.
And . . . we have waited. As you probably know, results are slow in coming in the wine business. Glaciers advance and retreat in a bigger hurry. From the moment you decide to plant a grapevine, nearly a decade of your life can vanish before you see the resulting wine in your glass. Patience is at a premium.
But now, as we approach the winery's 29th Anniversary (on July 3), we are happy to say that the wait is over. Eight years after we caught the Cabernet Bug, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon are both included on our Wine List--although in fairly limited quantities. They are also included in our upcoming
CABERNET WINE DINNER
FEATURING LOCALLY-GROWN WINES and INGREDIENTS
here at Blumenhof on Thursday, July 21 at 7:00 p.m.:
Smoked Trout Mousse
with Fried Capers and Pimentos on Pumpernickel Crostini
Paired with Blumenhof 2014 Rayon d'Or
with Crispy Bacon, Hard Boiled Duck Egg, Vermillion River Bleu,
Grape Tomatoes, Onion, and White Wine Vinaigrette on a Bed of Field Greens
Paired with Blumenhof Plan B 2015
Grilled Apricot Dijon Glazed Pork Porterhouse
with Rosemary Roasted Red Potatoes and Sautéed Green Beans
Paired with Blumenhof 2013 Virant Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Flourless Chocolate Cake
with Fresh Berries and Whipped Cream
Paired with Blumenhof 2013 Cabernet Franc
Prepaid Reservations Available at $55 per Person - Wine pairings included. Seating is Limited. Call 800-419-2245 or fill out the form below to reserve your table today.