Franciscan 2004 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon - ~$24

Franciscan is a well-established quality winery in Napa, California, and so of course it's wines are widely available outside of Fresh & Easy. Still, I thought it would be worthwhile to review one of the "top-shelf" F&E offerings.

The Napa Valley Cab is Franciscan's "entry-level" version, but it is hardly a light-weight red. The nose offers up tobacco, chocolate, and a touch of sweet oak. The palate is at once muscular and lush, defined by dark-roasted coffee and bitter-sweet chocolate laced through with plum and currant notes. The tannins on the finish are assertive but nicely fine-grained and well-integrated with the toasty oak and mocha on the longish finish.

Though at ~$24 it's pricier than most Fresh & Easy offerings (and you can likely get it for closer to or a bit under $20 at larger wine retailers) this is definitely something to consider if you're in the mood for a robust Cab for a special occasion.


Drinkability: 9.5/10
Price: 3.5/5
Total value: 13/15


  1. Agreed! It was a very nice wine. I'll be watching to see if it goes on sale so I can stock up!

  2. Highly recommended especially on sale @ $15.99 in my local F&E! saw the same wine @ Ralphs for $29.99. Grab it!

  3. $30! Wow, that's a bit high. But $16 is a great deal pretty much anywhere - Bevmo, for example, offers this Franciscan (the 2006, actually) for ~$20.

    I noticed that at my F&E there's a mix of mostly 2004s and a few 2005s. While 2004 was excellent in Napa, 2005 was even better. Something to consider when poring over the shelves.


Individual taste matters! What did you think of the wine?