Sonshine, “Beau Gosse” Cabernet Franc
Sonshine, “Beau Gosse” Cabernet Franc

Sonshine, “Beau Gosse” Cabernet Franc

Loire Valley, France 2020 (750mL)
Regular price$40.00
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Sonshine, “Beau Gosse” Cabernet Franc

There’s no denying that today’s offer is also a feel-good story. An enterprising young woman leaves the comforts of home to pursue her passion for winemaking and ends up finding community and purpose in the central Loire Valley. But the backstory was a question mark when the SommSelect team first tasted the wine, all we knew then was that it was a UNANIMOUS HIT.

Cabernet Franc can make powerful, serious wines that require cellaring, or it can make easy drinking wines that you can find at any Parisian bistro. In the past, those bistro versions were often overtly vegetal, while these days they can be overtly fruity. “Beau Gosse” occupies an almost magical middle ground, perfectly balanced and super easy to love but with underlying complexities and surprising elegance. It’s a Cab Franc that screams “drink me!” but I would also love to lose a bottle or two in the cellar for a few years. It is, quite simply, a special bottle of wine and an exceptional value.

That best-of-both-worlds winemaking is a very tough trick to pull off, but with just a few years of experience that is exactly what Lisanne van Son has accomplished. How does she do it? First she sources only the very best fruit. When Lisanne moved to the Loire Valley in 2017 with the dream of becoming a winemaker, she immediately immersed herself in the culture and community of organic and biodynamic grape growers. Since then, she’s had access to some incredible grapes. In the cellar she is extremely gentle with her Cabernet Franc, avoiding over-extraction and hard tannins. Lisanne is committed to natural winemaking, adding nothing other than a bit of SO2 as needed at bottling. But she is also committed to purity and transparency; this wine is as clean as a whistle. It’s another example of winemaking wizardry, and that is exactly why we loved this bottle from the first taste.

Sonshine Vins is essentially a one-woman operation. Lisanne spends countless hours in the vineyards and cellar, only bringing in a small team of seasonal employees to help during harvest. For “Beau Gosse,” she sources Cabernet Franc from a single vineyard in the hamlet of Lussault sur Loire, in the Touraine appellation of the central Loire Valley. The vines are Certified Organic and are 40 plus years old, a perfect combination that helps produce the gorgeous fruit that Lisanne can transform into a silky, complex yet smashable red. In the cellar she ferments the fruit with native yeasts in tanks then she rests the wine in neutral barriques for 10 months before bottling without fining or filtration. 

“Beau Gosse” loosely translates as “handsome” in French, and there is no doubt that this is a very attractive bottle of Cabernet Franc. A heady nose of wildberries and forest herbs with just a tiny hint of green peppercorn leaps from the glass while loads of black and red fruit pushes forward on the palate. The silky, almost sumptuous texture is framed by soft, chalky tannins and crunchy acidity that adds to the pure drinkability of the wine, but it is the surprisingly long finish with lingering mineral and savory flavors that keeps you coming back for more. With the al fresco dining season upon us we can’t think of a better red to have around for all manner of outdoor gatherings. Serve this special bottle with a slight chill next to anything grilled or smoked—give it the bistro dish it was made for and watch the bottle disappear in a flash!

Sonshine, “Beau Gosse” Cabernet Franc




Enjoying the greatest wines of Beaujolais starts, as it usually does, with the lay of the land. In Beaujolais, 10 localities have been given their own AOC (Appellation of Controlled Origin) designation. They are: Saint Amour; Juliénas; Chénas; Moulin-à Vent; Fleurie; Chiroubles; Morgon; Régnié; Côte de Brouilly; and Brouilly.

Southwestern France


Bordeaux surrounds two rivers, the Dordogne and Garonne, which intersect north of the city of Bordeaux to form the Gironde Estuary, which empties into the Atlantic Ocean. The region is at the 45th parallel (California’s Napa Valley is at the38th), with a mild, Atlantic-influenced climate enabling the maturation of late-ripening varieties.

Central France

Loire Valley

The Loire is France’s longest river (634 miles), originating in the southerly Cévennes Mountains, flowing north towards Paris, then curving westward and emptying into the Atlantic Ocean near Nantes. The Loire and its tributaries cover a huge swath of central France, with most of the wine appellations on an east-west stretch at47 degrees north (the same latitude as Burgundy).

Northeastern France


Alsace, in Northeastern France, is one of the most geologically diverse wine regions in the world, with vineyards running from the foothills of theVosges Mountains down to the Rhine River Valley below.

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