Feature

California’s ‘new whites’

Winemakers in California are producing new varieties of blended white wines.

A new generation of blended white wines is showcasing “the best of California ingenuity,” said Jon Bonné in the San Francisco Chronicle. Tired of chardonnay and insipid pinot grigios, some winemakers are experimenting with little-known grape varieties and new cellar practices, seeking to produce wines with “distinct complexity.”

2010 Matthiasson Napa Valley White ($35). Give this young wine six months to blossom. It has hints of “chive, orange peel, and ripe pear.”

2010 Spottswoode Napa-Sonoma Counties Sauvignon Blanc ($36). Six vineyards provided the grapes. Slight acidity is offset by “dense flavors of lemon, vanilla, and apricot.”

2009 Arbe Garbe Russian River Valley White ($26). “Seamless and profound,” this pinot-grigio-dominated blend has a “woodruff-like green note,” which “surfaces amid bright citrus oil, pear, and tangerine.”

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