May 27, 2009

Wine Finds

It's time for another installment of Wine Finds, and with the warm weather upon us, I thought a white selection was in order. We enjoyed our first bottle of Geyser Peak Sauvignon Blanc for the season on Memorial Day. This is our favorite bottle of white wine, it's crisp and refreshing and not too sweet.

Sunset magazine named this wine the "Best White Wine Under $10" last spring or summer. At least that's how I remember it. Looking it up online, Sunset also named it "Our favorite crisp western white under $15" and a "Steal of the Year." I'm so happy I actually read that issue because this has become a staple when we want to treat ourselves and we're in the mood for white rather than red. At $8.99, it's a little bit of a splurge, but well worth it. At least, that's the Trader Joe's price on the west coast.

This bottle has a twist-off cap rather than a cork, but don't be put off by that. From what I understand, it's actually better because corks go bad sometimes. The wineries are having a hard time marketing it, because consumers associate twist-off tops with cheap wine like Boone's Farm. But this wine is a long way from Strawberry Hill.

And as I've mentioned before, I've never taken a wine appreciation class and the only "vocabulary" I know is a word here and there I pick up from a friend. But here's a sample of the reviews of this wine: "Delightful and super-tropical, with mango, honeydew melon, peach, and soft floral notes," "outstanding palate," and "intense and bright, with a mouthwatering acidity and a long, lingering finish." So there you go.

I haven't decided whether to call myself a lush, a wino, or a wineaux, but I do enjoy a good bottle of wine, especially with friends (luckily, hardly ever by myself). And I'm hoping that my years of experience (decades) will be put to use for your benefit with my random, possibly whimsical tips. Please let me know if you try this bottle, or if you have any recommendations to tell us about in the Comments section. And to check out previous installments of Wine Finds, click here.


jason said...

I am a big fan of the Geyser Peak as well. Haven't opened one yet this year but my mouth is watering now. I'll have to get it in the fridge when I get home tonight. Have you tried any of the New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc's at Trader Joe's? I ranked the King Shag #3 in my latest Trader Joe's Top 10 Wine List. It's a few bucks cheaper which is nice. Guessing the Geyser Peak finds its way back into the Top 10 soon. It was #1 last summer... A red that will save the pocket book is the Archero Nero d' Avola Ruggero which I think is a steal at $5.

Kris in JP said...

I have a couple of recommendations. Secret de Campane by Vins de Pays de la principante. I get it here on the east coast for $7.50/bottle. It has a pink-ish rose label. It is one of my wine store's best sellers. I also like the 2008 Petit from South Africa by Ken Forrester. It is a Chenin Blanc and I have gotten it for $9. I also like the sparkling from South Africa Pearly Bay called Celebration, which I have bought for $10. All of these wines are google-able given the information I have written and all I have enjoyed. I hope you will too!

Jill said...

Ooooh you all are making me wish for sunnier evenings to enjoy wine outdoors - rain rain rain all week on the east coast. But with our recent deck addition, and your wine post, I will have new wines to check out once the sun decides to join us again! Our favorite is Zenato's Pinot Grigio from Italy - though being from California myself, I am always happy to hear of a good 'local' wine!

stephanie said...

hey Ang!
Try this fantasic light, easy Spanish wine called :
Vinho Verde

Whole Foods has had it on sale down here for months for.........$4.99!!!!

I don't like my whites too buttery or sweet, so this is a perfect light summer wine for me.
And you can't beat that price.


Angela said...

Jason- I checked out your blog and will definitely be trying your Top 10 list- thanks for coming by and commenting!

Kris- Thanks for the recommendations. I'm going to write them down and look for them.
Thanks for commenting!

Jill- Summer will be here in no time, even on the East Coast. Sipping wine on a new deck- it sounds fabulous! I love Pinot Grigio- will definitely check that out.

Steph- Thanks for the tip, and I love the price!

With all these recommendations, maybe I'll become a true fan of white wine, just in time for the heat.

Penny in Australia said...

ahhh the Stelvin screwcap. These are now hugely popular in Australia (there was a little bit of resistance at first, but no-one bats an eye now). The cost of them is very low (for the winemakers) and of course it stops your wine from becoming 'corked' or spoiled by bad cork (which apparently affects about 8% of wine! The cost saving from this alone would make it worthwhile to switch over).

The screwcaps are now very prevalent here, I'd guess that well over 50% of wine in the average liquor store would have them, and I prefer them greatly. They're fantastic for taking out with you (especially picnics, etc, when you always forget the corkscrew) and they stop broken corks etc. Love them!