Monday, June 16, 2014

Warm Weather White Wines: Dry Creek Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc

Three new white wine releases by Dry Creek Vineyards were shared with me recently, and they are perfect for springtime and summer consumption.  Personally, I enjoy whites all year long.  ‘Tis the season, though, for outdoor meals and bottles of whites on ice to pair with them.  We will cover the Dry Creek Vineyard Chenin Blanc and Fumé Blanc soon.  Today it’s their flagship wine.

Dry Creek Vineyard founder David Stare was the first to plant Sauvignon Blanc in Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley.  Fittingly, that grape variety carries the banner for the winery some four decades down the road.

Produced by the second-generation of the family’s wine workers, Kim Stare Wallace and her husband Don, several different lots of grapes contributed to the wine.  It is anchored by 91% Sauvignon Blanc grapes, while a 9% splash of clone Sauvignon Musqué sails in for depth and richness, adding a tropical flavor and a full mouthfeel.  At 14.1% abv, it is a fairly hefty white, but the price tag comes in at just $18.

The winery says 2013 offered near perfect growing conditions featuring a mild winter and a moderate summer, and was one of the driest vintages on record.  These factors gave Dry Creek Vineyard some great fruit with which to work, and they made the most of it.

Possessing a very pale color, the wine gives a beautifully pungent aroma package of fresh grassiness, pineapple, pear and grapefruit zest.  The palate’s first name is savory - a gorgeous salinity is the first thing to hit my tongue.  The minerality is almost overwhelming, and I mean that in a good way.  River rocks come to mind as they are washed along in a wave of citrus.  Orange, lemon, lime and grapefruit all squeeze a little character into the flavor profile.  Pair it with an avocado salad or a plate of oysters.

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