Let's Talk Wine with Eric Garnier
May 2012


No, I'm not referring to the World Wide Web. In my world, it stands for "Wonderful World of Wine!

As usual, the last couple of months have been busy tasting new wines. Lots of large wine tastings, trying the newest vintages, newest wineries (yes, they keep popping up), both domestic and imports. Like most of us, I keep gravitating to the old standby's. Cabernet, Chardonnay, Merlot, etc,etc.

The excitement of wine for many of us is when we try something that we have never heard of, let alone tasted. In this article, I am going to list a few varietals that I recommend trying next time you are shopping for wine. Remember, these are NOT your typical varietals.

Zuccardi Bonarda
One of my favorite new finds is a grape called Bonarda from Mendoza, Argentina. It has a rich violet color, and has wonderful aromas of blueberry and blackberry.. It is vivacious, full of pure ripe fruit, yet soft in style with a great finish.

Quinta do Vale Meao
Next, try the great wines from Portugal. Touriga National, Touriga Franca and. Tinta Franca. These wines from the Douro area are usually blended together and are fabulous wines.

J.Lohr Wildflower Valdiguie
Another light red grape grown in Monterey County is the Valdiguie. This grape has aromas of boysenberry, cherry, and cranberry, with a plump, supple and low tannin mouthfeel.

Chandon Pinot Meunière
How about Pinot Meunière. Many of you know this as one of the major grapes that go into almost all good sparkling wines. Try this intense and versatile wine with full flavored or spicy foods

Lee Family Farm Verdelho
White wines also have their share of lesser known varietals. Next time you are looking for something different and unique, try a Verdelho. Light, dry and slightly flowerely, this is a very nice summer wine. Pairs well with soft cheeses or grilled chicken.

Tariquet Clasic Ugni Blanc- Colombard
Lastly, try a Ugni Blanc from France. This happens to be the primary grape used for making cognac. Often blended with Colombard,this wine can be enjoyed at any time as an aperitif, fish or shellfish.

These wines are available at fine wine stores right here in Ventura.


Questions or comments? Reach me at : Wineoeric@gmail.com

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