This Chardonnay from the De Wets of Excelsior in Ashton, South Africa makes a great, reasonably priced wine for restaurants and consumers alike. Chardonnay grapes were first planted in South Africa in the 1920s but the De Wets have a winemaking tradition that dates back to 1697! The soils of the Robertson area were once used for raising championship thoroughbred horses, Excelsior points out. Today, they’re used for making fine wines.
This reasonably priced ( $6/99-$8.99 retail) offers value to restaurants and customers alike.
Lime slopes near the river and the alluvial soils of the river area proved useful for growing grapes. Robertson is a warm, dry growing region specializing today in white wines. Three Chardonnay blends come together to yield flavors of green apple, pineapple and citrus. The creamy grapes are fermented in stainless steel tanks and aged for nine months. The result is a wine with smoothness, elegance and acidity. Check the wine out from http://www.capeclassics.com.
For many centuries, Lucien Albrecht has been a leader, indeed, a “founding father,” of Crémant D’Alsace in Alsace where Romanus Albrecht began making wine in 1425.
Today, the winery is overseen by a leading produce, Wolfberger, an overseer of 450 wine estates. Like Albrecht, they have deep respect for the grapes, declaring: “Respectful of the Past and Ambitious for the Future.”
This sparkling Brut Rosé is made from 100% Pinot Noir in the “methode traditionalle.” Considered a great specialty of the house, it exudes notes of strawberry and wild cherry and is a rich aperitif with dry acidity, and is well suited to accompany fruit-based desserts.
The wine is 12% ABV and in 2004, the winery won four separate gold medals in the 14th Concours National Crémant de France competition.
A delightful addition to celebrations, it is also a beautiful example of its unique terroir, exemplifying the winery’s style in this versatile region. It’s available through Pasternak Wine Imports.
Victor, CA is a tiny place – home to Victor Vineyards, east of Lodi. Ask the 290 residents why the rooster crossed the road and they’re quick to let you know it was a bird that preferred wine over water and would cross the highway at harvest time to get to the vineyard!
The Lawson Ranch Chardonnay, 2012, Lodi offers notes of pear, peach, and apple with hints of toasted oak and vanilla. It’s crisp, fruity and delicious. Follow that rooster if you’re in town! It will steer you right.
The grapes are grown along the Mokelumne River. Owner Robert Lawson, who’s been in the area 50-plus years, dreamed of owning a winery and in 993 he purchased 90 acres in the Mokelumne River AVA, now know as Lawson Vineyard. After successfully building a reputation for supplying grapes to some of the best wineries around the country, he purchased the historic Victor Fruit Growers Company location in 1999. Today, he lives his dream of making his own vines.
From Portugal comes this ruby red wine whose initials stand for Luxury Vargas Wines.From Spirit Grape Iberia, the wine is produced and bottled by H. Abrante Douro Wine Ltd. It has good structure and balance and is smooth with excellent fruit flavors. Give it plenty of air and those flavors will intensify. It’s sensuous and silky and has a suggested retail price of $9.99, making it an ideal wine by the glass, offering value to both the diner and the restaurant. The wine is imported by Dos Familias.com. Visit http://www.ibericawines.com/
Santa Carolina’s Leyda Estate is located near the Pacific Ocean in Chile where the terroir lends aromatic complexity to the wines, with floral notes, touches of grapefruit and peach and minerality. Drink with salads, ceviches, and seafood. The winery has a rich tradition dating to 1875 when Louis Pereyra Cotapos hired a French winemaker to make top quality Chilean wines, named for his wife, Carolina.
In 1973, the cellars received National Monument status. Damaged in a major earthquake in 2010, the winery was rebuilt, the start of a new stage in its history.
Producing quality and improving and developing new production techniques has brought Santa Carolina numerous accolades and honors throughout the years across the variety of price ranges it offers. Go to http://www.santacarolina.cl/
Intensely dark and rich in black fruit flavors, Cakebread Cellars 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon is the result of uneven winter and spring weather conditions (the vintner called the growing season a seesaw) that reduced the grape crop but at the same time, led to concentrated flavors of black cherry, black currant and pepper. That summer’s warm days and cool nights presented ideal conditions for full maturation. The wine is made with 81 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, seven percent Merlot and Cabernet Franc, four percent Petit Verdot and one percent Malbec. The result is a well-balanced wine with elegance, vibrant fruit flavors, good tannins and a long finish. Go to www.cakebread.com.