Four alternative whites from the Vintages June 9th release

White Grapes. Photo Credit: Steve Borichevsky

A world awaits outside the white wine box of Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. There are aromatics unsniffed, flavors not yet tasted, varietals unexplored. Coming this weekend to a stadium of hate, (sorry, wrong genre), to an LCBO Vintages location near you are whites to usher in a summer of sipping, savouring and sweating.

Sandhill Small Lots Viognier 2010 (0126862, $24.95) is culpable in complexities. Nails Northern Rhône in British Columbia by way of Great Bear shacked up with the Sonoran. Raises arid Arizona desert and tropical tree fruit scents. Mesquite mingling with Pecan. Makes you want to sit down with a mess of crustaceans. Would drink well with just about anything. “When we didn’t have Crawdads we ate sand.” 90









D’arenberg The Hermit Crab Viognier/Marsanne 2010 (0662775, $17.95) the Aussie ranger works because its two Northern and Southern Rhône grapes interchange within each other’s shells. The seamless integration emanates calcified, cool, concise pear and spice. I have always liked this modest, McLarenVale molter.  89








Dr. Pauly-Bergweiler Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese 2009 (0197186, $21.95) races out of the nuss pit with peerless Bergweiler CVR** Spätlese speed. The late harvest drupe is so focused you would never know how sweet the middle ground really is. Never struggling against circumstance, it slides effortlessly into Spätlese orbit. Searching and finding the German Riesling dream. Sonnenuhr vineyard is here and “the time is right, for racing in the street.”  91









Abanico Tempestad Godello 2010 (0276071, $17.95) magnetizes the sandstone, schist, ordovicic and siluric slate of Valdeorras with the equatorial side of Chardonnay, of melon and pineapple. Equivalent to good Burgundy? Not so much. The fruit acid continuum does persist though and a tempest of Spanish flavour abounds. Will the Godello prosper?  “Let your indulgence set me free.”  88

IVR* – Vintage Direct Intrigue-to-Value Ratio

CVR** – Vintage Direct Curiosity-to-Value Ratio

Good to go!

One comment on “Four alternative whites from the Vintages June 9th release

  1. aylagoddard says:

    Great little blog! Nice description of the Godello which I tried only last week – I think recent vintages have improved and as for the Viognier I want to try it, like, now!

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