Story by Sarah Murphy Robertson
Each week I wax poetic about wine. Many times it is a prime varietal that would pair well with the weather and seasonal foods at hand. But blends are terrific too. So as Spring edges out wintertime along 30A, this week’s focus will be on White Blends and a few you must try.
While varying from country to country, for a wine to be labeled as one specific varietal it needs to generally contain between 75 and 85 % of one kind of grape. Blends are exactly what their name suggests: a mixture of two or more kinds of grape. The results can be beautiful, that is, the sum of their parts is actually greater than each fruit independently! Blending can enhance the complexity and body of wines as they complement the best characteristics of each grape.
The Oregonian Sokol Blosser “Evolution” is a dynamic blend indeed! It is a classic combination of 9 white grapes including Chardonnay and Pinot Gris and the result is each vintage is slightly different. This wine is extremely food-friendly and will enhance internationally inspired dishes like spicy curries and stir frys, but can also be served with a simple salad or cheese plate.
The 2013 Vespa Bianco is a blend of mostly Chardonnay and Sauvignon grapes and has the lovely floral aromas and taste of juicy stone fruit and pear on the palate. This blend is versatile but especially nice with shellfish. If you are looking for a wine to pair with a vegetarian course, this would also be a good choice, as it plays beautifully with the rich, earthy flavor of mushrooms. Affordability and accessibility are always important when making a selection for casual wine drinking.
The 2013 Conundrum White Blend from California is both of those. This reasonably priced bottle can be found at most major grocers and it touts a nose of citrus, Granny Smith apple, peach and mango. This wine would go well with an easily assembled dinner of grilled fish or shrimp tacos.