COLUMN WRITTEN BY PHILLIP SILVERSTONE
It’s mid Winter so that means one thing: white wines! Yes, I said white. How predictable to sit down with a red just because it’s cold outside. Come on people, think positively. Summer’s just around the corner so let’s lift our spirits and our glasses in defiance of winter’s wretchedness and begin our summer sipping right now, to bring some summer sunshine into these dreary days.
I’m itching to tell you about the four splendid bottles of white wine I tasted recently — and I’m merely scratching the surface (pun intended) – of all the terrific whites waiting patiently to be taken from their winter sojourn on the shop shelf.
The Beach House Sauvignon Blanc (PLCB Code 6676 $10.99). First and foremost, this wine has a rocking label. Yes I actually said I like the label. It is fun, it’s sexy and one look at the label and you’re swept away to the beach as swiftly as your imagination can take you there. This is the liquid equivalent of a Beach Boys classic song. The wine is so cool looking and so New World that unless you take time to study the label you won’t even realize it comes from South Africa. That’s right, it’s not from the USA, it’s from Wellington in the Western Cape. The wine has a small amount of Semillon added to the Sauvignon Blanc. It’s fresh, fruity and full of grass and lemon rinds (not literally, I mean this is what is conjured up when the elixir hits the palate). Any wine with a star fish on its label is always welcome in my glass.
A to Z Wineworks Oregon Pinot Gris (PLCB Code 8634 $16.99). Staying with fun wines, here’s a quote from this winery’s website www.atozwineworks.com: “We are going to relentlessly chase perfection, knowing full well we will not catch it, because nothing is perfect.
But we are going to relentlessly chase it, because in the process we will catch
excellence. We are not at all interested in just being good.” The wine is brilliant. If you’re expecting a Pinot Gris from Alsace then stick to the Alsace variety. This is a light bodied quaffer. There is a definite citrus flavor with some melon and most definitely dear old Granny Smith’s apples are also in the flavor. Clean, crisp and totally refreshing and satisfying.
McManis Family Vineyards Chardonnay (PLCB Code 8647 $10.99). I love this family’s wines from California. Just like the two previous wines, they are made to be enjoyed and not analyzed. They aren’t produced for the swirly, sniffy, smelly crowd. They’re made for the fun, cool set who wants the wine in their glass to be totally enjoyable. And although I shy away from Chards because they bore the socks off me, this nifty nectar is about as boring as watching Al Pacino in the final scene of “Scent Of A Woman.” The wine has some creaminess, nuttiness and has a modest amount of richness thanks to some oak aging. And, it is bottled with a Stelvin Closure. In layman’s lingo that’s a screwcap. The wine is awesome or as Pacino would say: “Whoo-ah”!
Leonard Kreusch Estate Gewürztraminer (PLCB Code 8393 $13.99). When the world was young and I first embarked on my journey in wine the LK wines were the first I tasted. I must confess that their labels would now be considered politically incorrect and probably offensive, but that was the innocent 70’s when the only PC I knew directed traffic at the end of my road and popped in for a cup of tea when he’d finished his traffic duty. Police Constable Shoosmith was indeed a lovely chap. The Kreusch Gewurz comes from the Rheinhessen, it is a screw cap and there is a delicate sweetness to it that transports me back to happier times when life and wines seemed so much simpler. Kreusch’s wines were never pretentious or purporting to be anything more than well-structured, dependable, flavorful drinks. Have this wine with your favorite Chinese meal and it will take days to get the smile of contentment off your face. Cheers!
Phillip Silverstone’s column appears each week in this publication. “Time Out With Phillip Silverstone” is a weekly two-hour podcast heard exclusively on TuneIn radio anytime and anywhere worldwide either on the free TuneIn app for all smart phones and tablets (Search: Phillip Silverstone) or online on Tunein at: http://bit.ly/1gY2Ht4. “Follow” the show for weekly updates. You can also LIKE Phillip on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Phillipsilverstone and follow him on Twitter: @wining