White wines you will want to get to know

Albarino, Verdejo, Torrontes, Sylvaner, Gruner Veltliner and Viognier all sound like exotic place names rather than wines.

Come, enjoy an evening discovering new white wine varietals. Expand your palate, beyond the popular International varietals. (If you have been lucky enough to have tried one or two before, you already know you will have fun comparing the flight).  They’ve been sitting on the shelf at the wine store all this time. Right under your unsuspecting nose!

I look forward to seeing you at the tasting table,







ALBARINO “al- barin- eeo”

Abellio Albarino D.O. Rais Baixas “re-ahs  buy-shuss”, Spain

#408278 $12.85  12.5 % alc 4 G/L sugar  (bone dry)

Style: light, crisp, – do not age.

bracing, tangy, zippy and mouth-watering with dry minerality

Thick skins on grapes give the intensity of aromas

Fruity: lime, apple, grapefruit, peaches

Floral: blossoms: linden, hyacinth

Spicy: almond/almond paste

Herbal: grass

In Portugal this grape is called Alvarinho; a component of Vinho Verde

Suited to seafood, sushi, tikka masula, pad thai, Indian and Thai food as it is generally low in alcohol and has high acidity




Finca EL Origen Reserva; Valle de Cafayate, ArgentinaIMG_9393n

#262089    $15.95   14% alc   4 G/L 

Style: aromatic and flavourful

Medium bodied, well balanced with great structured acidity with soft finish

No oak – drink cold and young, the flavour is lost quickly in the air.

Super aromatic! Torrontess= torrent=aromatic

Starts sweet and finishes dry; similar to Viognier but dry crisp like Sauvignon Blanc

Fruity and floral (Jasmin, lilac)

Green apple, peach, apricot, citrus: orange, grapefruit, lavender and lichee

Versatile food pairing: Asian, Mexican, guacamole, seafood. Pairs well with smoked meats, chicken, aged cheeses, goat cheese



SYLVANER  “sil-vah-ner”

Pierre Sparr Reserva, Alsace FranceIMG_9402n

#408179  $13.95   12 % alc  8 G/L

Style: aromatic and flavourful – misnomer! Not an aromatic grape

Bright acidity, neutral flavours, crisp and bone dry.

Light to med bodied and well structured.

Dry, floral and fruity: apples and limes, lemon, green apple, spicy quality

Pairs well with asparagus and artichokes, reacts well with onions because of neutral flavours, and surprisingly also Cilantro.

Seafood, fish, cold meats, pork, quiche, salads and vegetable dishes




GRUNER VELTLINER   “grooner-velt-leener”

Wachau Durnstein Gruner Veltliner Federspiel

#375089   $14.95   12.5 % alc   4 G/L   Wachau, AustriaIMG_9404n

Style: Aromatic and flavourful

“drinking liquid stone”

“the green wine”

Pale lemon green, medium bodied with high acidity

Aromatic and mineral with spicy aromas

Vegetal, white pepper, stone-fruit, citrus: lemon, lime; celery, radish, ginger, crisp citrus fruit, and pear. Herbaceous, and mineral with creamy texture

Elegantly balanced

Good for difficult foods: onion, artichoke and asparagus

French charcuterie, Italian salami, camembert, grilled sardines, green salad, lentils, rabbit, Schnitzel, bratwurst, Asian, Indian, Indonesian, sweet and sour, marinades and sauces




VERDEJO “ver-day-ho”

Fasto Verdejo Rueda – Rueda SpainIMG_9406n

#400200     $11.60   12.5 % alc   6 G/L

Style: light and crisp

Pale golden lemon, extra dry light in body with subtle aromas of lemon zest, ripe golden apple, grapefruit, passion fruit, anise and fennel hints of fresh herbs.

Ranges from herbaceous in cool vintages and early harvest to tropical fruit late harvests and warmer vintages.

Light in body with more citrus, tropical fruit and fresh herbs

Barrel fermentation can add richness and complexity and aging potential



VIOGNIER “vee-oh-nay”

La Roche Viognier de la Chevalier, France

#377622       $12.90      13.5 % alc       4 G/LIMG_9408n

Style: Aromatic and flavourful

Deep colour yellow gold, perfume, low acidity (good varietal for blending)

Bone dry; floral and tropical notes, rich with dried fruits and orange blossoms, spices

6 months in steel tanks

Floral: orange blossom, violet, honey

Fruit: over-ripe apricots, mango, pineapple, kiwi, tangerine

Spice: anise, mint

Herbal: mown hay, tobacco

Mouthfeel: creamy, rich, full, viscous

Pairs well with foods that suggest sweet but are not sweet ie: Moroccan, Indian, chutney, mango salsa, tahini and sweet potato, fruit and spice flavours, richer white meats.

Teriyaki salmon, shellfish, General Tso chicken, parmesan risotto, scallop/crab/lobster

Don’t pair with lighter foods and avoid tart/acid based dressings as well as high heat because of high alcohol


Processing bouquets and flavours:

Malolactic: butter, cream

Oak (light) vanilla, sweet wood

Oak (heavy) oak, smoke, toast

Alcohol: heat, burning


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