What? It is a grape, of course! It is grown heavily in Austria, it’s homeland. “Blau” is for “blue” and “fränkisch” is for “Frankish” or “Franconian”. Given that this is a bluish grape from the area of Franconia, it most likely means “bluish grape of Franconia”. However, since “fränkisch” could also refer to the language, I prefer to think of it as “naughty Frankish words”.
Care to try this grape? Quelle coincidence! We happen to have a gorgeous version on our menu: Schiefer Krise, Blaufrankisch 2010. This is a solid, elegant wine with a medium body and a good deal of acid. The wine has cherries and blueberries, dusty lilac and rose, and forest soils. It compares well to a pinot noir, with easier drinkability. It is a great expression of the varietal that works exceedingly well with cheese and charcuterie.
Philly’s Craig Laban wrote about this wine (positively) in a recent review. Or, you can listen to Phill and Jill (aka “The Wining Archaeologist:) chat about it in this podcast. What’s your take?
This is not the first Blaufränkisch to grace our wine menu. We previously carried a 2007 Blaufränkisch from Weingut Tinhof in Austria, as well as a lovely Shooting Star Blue Franc (yes, same thing) from Washington State. That wine bears one of my favorite labels.