Easter brunch often incorporates great traditions with the flavors of spring. Add one of these bottles to your Easter table for pairing with everything from roasted lamb to spring greens and veggies. Some of these selections were sent for editorial considerations, all are tasty.
2009 Fume Blanc Reserve from Robert Mondavi has always been a favorite when looking for a Sauvignon Blanc that was fresh and vibrant, but not the huge citrus bomb. Blending a bit of Semillion to the Sauvignon Blanc at the end adds richness and depth to the wine in a very Bordeaux style. It is a special wine for Mondavi with less than 2000 cases made from their To Kalon vineyard blocks in Napa.
Inama Soave Classico from the Veneto region of Italy is one of my favorite whites, made from 100% Garganega. A good option if you want something a bit rounder and more interesting than some typicall Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blancoptions, but not as heavy as some Chardonnays can be. There is a layer of earthiness withSoave wines that I love, married with bright fruit and a hint of honey.
Sbragia 2008 Gamble Ranch Chardonnay is the 7th vintage of this wine for Sbragia made from fruit within Gamble Ranch vineyards which span across the Yountville and Oakville Crossroads in Napa. Big, bold and perfectly balanced this wine goes through a month long fermentation in the barrel. Total barrel time is 18 months when you include aging, creating a wine filled with butterscotch, vanilla, baked apple and spice. A big wine to be enjoyed with big flavors.
The new release of FranciscanCuvee Sauvage just became available and it is drinking great now. Created by using only wild, native yeast from the vinyards during fermentation, creating a very smooth, lush and slightly earthier Chardonnay filled with green apple, honeysuckle and stone fruit like apricots and peaches witha layer of vanilla and spice. An excellent white selection with a heartier Easter dish.
Chile is making great Pinot Noir, and at a reasonable price when you consider the process for making this temperamental grape. Valdivieso is one winery in particular that makes a full-bodied, balanced and vibrant Pinot Noirfrom the Casablanca region of Chile. Filled with sweet red cherry, strawberry and raspberry with a layer of baking spices from the 12 months of aging in French oak barrels. Retails for around $17 a bottle.
In accordance with the day try a wine from Galilee. Galil Mountain Merlot is made from grapes grown in high elevations in Upper Galilee and is made for sipping on its own or pairing with grilled lamb or bold chicken dishes. Filled with blackberry and plum with a hint of smoke and tobacco the wine is a good medium-bodied wine option.
I had an interesting wine the other night from Portugal. Though I am used to only drinking Port from Portugal, this one was made with the grapes that usually go into Port, just made into a hearty red wine. Prazo de Roriz 2008 Douro DOC is an intense wine with black cherry and black plum with a hint of lively herbal and mineral notes to cut through some of the dense flavors. Definately a food wine this would be great served with anything from grilled steaks to grilled veggies, the smokiness that comes from grilling will balance and compliment the wine.
Wrath Doctor’s Vineyard Syrahfrom Santa Lucia Highlands is an incredible wine, filled with the balance of flavors that I love in Syrah- good meaty, smoke, pepper and spice balanced withcherry, berry and a layer of herbal notes. A dense wine that goes well with any kind of meat dish or hard cheeses.