Origins of the Cabernet Sauvignon Varietal
Recently we received the interesting news that University of Davis researchers have concluded that Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc are the parentage of the prestigious Cabernet Sauvignon varietal. Professor Carole P. Meredith, an associate professor of viticulture and an authority on the genetics and analysis of grape vines, and John E. Bowers, a doctoral candidate in genetics, reported their findings in the May issue of the scientific journal Nature Genetics.
Cabernet Sauvignon has been grown in Bordeaux since the 17th century and is now the most widely planted, top-quality red wine grape in the world. Until now, the exact origin of Cabernet Sauvignon remained a mystery. Although a close link between Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon had been suspected, no one had any idea that Sauvignon Blanc was related.
The geneticists assume that natural cross-pollination some 300 or 400 years ago resulted in a single seedling that grew into a vine that produced exceptional grapes. All the Cabernet Sauvignon in the world presumably comes from that single vine.
"We believe we’ve proved the relationship well beyond any reasonable doubt," says Professor Meredith, stating the odds of the DNA testing being wrong are one in many trillions.