Tag Archives: Grüner Veltiner

A Dry White Summer

26 Jun

Last week I hosted a tasting for some wine-loving friends and neighbors. I served only white wines from around the globe.

One of the great joys people find in wine is being able to introduce people to wines and vice versa. I had guests who loved some wines immediately, others didn’t care for a wine until I suggested a specific food pairing- sweet, salty, savory- and with a quick bite, often their assessment changed.

Here are four of the riskier, ‘dark horse’ wines I served that were really fun, and I wanted to share them with you. Each is a dry white wine with lovely expression, and each pairs beautifully with food. They are delicious, artistic expressions of geography and oenology and are not only fun to try, but easy on the wallet.

Better yet, they took a group of people by surprise. Most people adored one of these four- people were surprised how good they were, or had never tried an unusual geography or grape like this before. Every one of these wines is worth your time to explore!

In no particular order:

Cantina Terlano’s Alto Adige Pinot Bianco, 2012, Terlano Italy. 13%ABV, street price around $14.

Martin Codax Albariño 2011, Rias Baixas, Spain. 12.5% ABV, Street price around $12.

L&T Durnberg Grüner Veltliner 2012, Falkenstein, Austria. 11.5% ABV. Street price around $10.

Leitz Rheingau Troken Reisling 2012, Germany. 12% ABV, Street price around $17.

dry white wines

 

Each of these, perfect for food with subtle aromas and delicate minerality, under $20 and pretty easy to find.

When your friends ask you for a “dry white wine” won’t they be amazed when you bring a perfect expression from an area they won’t expect?

Tell me which ones you have tried and what you thought, please? I look forward to hearing from you!

 

à votre santé!

 

Wines for Indian Summer

14 Oct

Hirsch Grüner Veltliner ’09, Austria. From Garnet Wines & Liquors, $14. 11.5% ABV.

The bottle is comical: green screwcap with red and white top, a childlike, handmade drawing of an inverted moose wearing an 1920’s bathing suit, holding a winged wineglass right side up.

hirsch_tv09_no1_rgb

While it is a funny label, I admit that had I seen this in the store, I would probably have ignored it based on my tendency to write off silly labels. So be glad I didn’t, instead I ordered this directly from the store as part of a mixed case for my personal tasting. The bottle enhances the green color, but in the glass the wine is a yellow straw with a gentle green tint. The delicate nose is mostly grapefruit and lemon peel with a note of sunflower, the mouthfeel is citrus with green pepper, sweetness hiding underneath the acidity and a long mineral finish. This is the alps’s answer to sauvignon blanc, done beautifully. I plan to find more good value grüners like this one and work on pairing notes! 

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Gazela Vino Verde 2012, Portugal. From Mayfair Wine, $6/bottle. 9% ABV

Greenish yellow tint, with lime and daffodil on the nose. Tart lime, granny smith apple peel, and soft, white peach undertones round out the palate with tiny bubbles. Tasty. At these prices, why aren’t we all drinking Vino Verde with a first course at dinner? Another great value that is worth trying.

Gazela Vinho Verde review photo

Saumon, King Ferry Winery, 2012.  King Ferry, NY.  $18/bottle at Local Farmer’s Market, as low as $10/bottle online.

Color: bright pink with orange accents. The nose has wildflowers and pink cotton candy showing the sweet side of this blend. In the mouth I experienced strawberry, watermelon, hints of halite, stone, and granite. A medium-to-short finish ends tart, with the mouth enjoying the blend and ready for another sip.  Other than being price-gouged at the local farmer’s market (I paid double the winery price! Boy did I feel foolish when I found the MSRP price online) I enjoyed this rosé. If I had purchased it at the winery price, it would be a good value. I’m still happy to support local wines and the local market, and this is the first New York wine I’ve shown on UnCorked!

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à votre santé!

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