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
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
#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
#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
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
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
#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
La Roche Viognier de la Chevalier, France
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