A Taster's Journey is a newsletter on food, wine and travel. After 15 years of studying, tasting, teaching, and selling wine, I created this newsletter to not only share my passion about wine, but of food and travel as well. Each month I hope to share wines that I am drinking, food that is in season, restaurants that I have enjoyed, and places I have traveled. Enjoy!"


White Wines for Spring

April 24th, 2005

As the summer approaches, I love to drink crisp, clean, white wines. Although I enjoy a good chardonnay, especially from Burgundy, during the warmer seasons I prefer simpler wines. Last year I wrote about the great Sancerres of the 2002 vintage, my favorite Sauvignon Blacs from California, and a great Gruner Veltliner. This year I wanted to explore a few other white wines that would be fun to drink this spring. Here are a few you might want to try:

is produced in northeastern Italy, and it’s my favorite Italian white wine. I find Soave to be very simple, yet classy and elegant. It’s a zesty wine with little or no oak. The predominant flavor is typically lemon citrus, with hints of almond and honey. Two producers that I have enjoyed are Pra & Monte Tondo ($11-12).
is a lesser know region in the Loire Valley that produces Sauvignon Blanc at a bargain price. It’s slightly less complex than the more well known Sancerre and Pouilly Fume, but it’s a very similar style. The wine is typically a yellow straw color with a citrus and herbal bouquets. I tried a Touraine produced by Joel Delaunay($12) that was delicious, clean, crisp, well rounded and beautifully balanced.
is a sophisticated wine that typically has rich fruit flavors like apricot or peach, and some may also exhibit a floral bouquet. The best Viogniers are from the Condrieu in France, but their prices can be quite expensive. I recently tried a Viognier from Alain Paret ($11) that would be perfect for summer. This wine was silky smooth with flavors of ripe pear and a hint of lemon. It was full, nicely balanced, and dry. For the price, it was absolutely delicious.
is a quality wine grape grown in Spain’s northwestern corner. Although some can get expensive, I enjoyed one produced by Laxas ($14). It was a zesty wine that was well balanced and layered with fruit. It tasted like a bowl of apricots, apples and green grapes, bold and refreshing.

I hope these wine ideas will stimulate you to try a few new wines this Spring. You should realize that we all have different palates, so pull some corks, and maybe you will unearth your favorite new wine.

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