It’s simply summer time and I need to constantly re-stock my white wine cellar and, as much as I like to experiment, I like to keep my cellar filled with solid staples. You’ve heard me talk about Chateau Ste Michelle and Wente as excellent producers of regularly available wines — some of which exceed grocery-store expectations. Well, here’s another name for you: Edna Valley Vineyard. It’s another label I see and just assume it’ll be good — even if it’s a varietal I traditionally shy away from. Long story short, I have yet to be disappointed, and the 2015 Edna Valley Vineyard Pinot Grigio is no exception.

Pinot Grigios can be hard — either cloyingly sweet or so lacking in flavor you may as well just drink water. The 2015 Edna Valley Vineyard Pinot Grigio meets that happy medium by providing a refreshing burst of fruit flavor…and a little something extra…

About the Wine: The 2015 Edna Valley Vineyard Pinot Grigio comes from, you guessed it, Edna Valley in California’s central coast wine region of San Louis Obispo (SLO), where the first vineyards were planted back in the 1800s. The vineyard gained its success by planting the grapes most successful to the region: Chardonnay. Today, Edna Valley’s confident grape-growers and wine-producers experiment with more versatile and food-friendly wines, like this 2015 Pinot Grigio.

The wine is made from 92% Pinot Grigio, 5% Reisling, and 3% Gewürztraminer. The grapes were pressed and fermented in stainless steel tanks for up to one week at cool temperatures. No oak was used during aging.

13% ABV

Flavor Profile: This wine is near clear in the glass, emitting just the faintest yellow hue. Initial aromas include fresh red apple and yellow pear with just a hint of lime zest. On the palate, the Pinot Grigio is quite engaging, those fruit flavors hit your tongue at the same time as the strong acidity — giving the wine a freshness straight-away. Let the wine linger on the tongue, and the acidic fruit melts away, bringing a dose of minerality, a bit of effervescence, and finishing with a lingering spice-tickle on the tongue.

It’s calm and refreshing, yet all at once exciting! You’ll be begging for your next sip just so you can experience that feeling again.

Food Pairing: Even though this is a Cali-wine through and through (with that dose of minerality and that kick of a finish, you’ll swear you’ve got sand between your toes), I would highly recommend pairing this with an Italian fare. Italians are known for food to please the masses, and their wines are made to compliment that cuisine — alway versatile, always engaging. And this wine fits that bill.

Because this is a light and refreshing wine, I would encourage a lighter main course so as not to hide all the beautiful flavors and feelings in the wine. I enjoyed this wine with a simple grilled chicken breast seasoned with fresh Italian-inspired herbs (rosemary, thyme, oregano) atop a filling spinach salad adorned with olives, feta, cherry tomatoes, corn, and mushrooms and just a light (pre-made) Italian dressing. The wine not only complimented the herbs and fresh veggies, it cut through the heartiness of the chicken breast and thus amplified that strong acidity, the beautiful maritime minerality, and that lingering finish.

Of course, I must admit. This wine is also enjoyable on its own as an aperitif…specifically while you’re blogging about wine…

PS That is not a plug for Sunset, I just used to work there and have a lot of swag…

 

More Info: I purchased this wine at Safeway (Sale Price: $12). You know you’ll be hearing more from me about Edna Valley Vineyard, but in the meantime, do check out the Edna Valley Vineyard website for a complete list of their available wines. Of course, wine-wannabe-snob that I am, I have to call out that I’m particularly interested in discovering their non-grocery-store-available wines (I’m looking at you Winemaker Series Chard, Pinot Noir, and/or Meritage).


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