Tuesday, June 10, 2008

WBW #46: A White Rhone Value for Summer Sipping

Up until recently I thought almost exclusively of red wine coming from the Rhone. But two tastings at Boston's Au'jourdhui restaurant turned me on to the wonderful whites that can emanate from the Rhone. So I was pleased by Dr. Deb's announcement on Good Wine for Under $20 that this WBW would focus on whites made from Rhone grapes.

The 2005 Chateau Pesquie Quintessence, made from roussanne and clairette grapes, was the first taste that piqued my interest in white Rhones. This blend was delicate and smooth, with a welcomed refreshing taste on a warm summer night.

Next time I visited Au'jourdhui for a Paso Robles tasting, we enjoyed a glass of 2006 L'Aventure Roussanne ($23). My first impression of the taste of this complex wine was a sense of smokiness. But the term used by the sommelier was "flint", and I did detect the underlying minerality when I started paying attention for it.

For this WBW, I tasted a significantly less expensive bottle that showed the white Rhone grapes can also be a very good source of value. I sampled a 2006 Verget du Sud Vin de Pays de Vaucluse ($10), which is a blend of Marsanne and Rousanne from Provence. This wine features a citrusy bouquet and a blend of tastes--a bit of lemon and a touch of honey in the background. Also has a slight mineral undertone to provide some structure. A nuanced and enjoyable wine for this price point. And it paired well with my Perfectly Grilled Salmon with Lemon Chive Butter.

For the unitiated, "Wine Blogging Wednesday" (WBW), is a wine blogging event now in its 46th monthly rendition, started by Lenn Thompson of Lenndevours. The idea is the host for the event in a given month announces a wine theme for participants to try and then blog about. The host then posts a roundup of what everyone sampled with links to their articles. I'll try to post about WBW for others who might want to join in and share. If you're reading this on or before Wednesday June 11, you can still even get in on the action this month, more detailed instructions can be found here.


Dr. Debs said...

David, it's good to have you back in WBW. I have only had the Pesquie red blends--never a white--but the reds are among my favorite Rhone wines. I'm putting that Paso Robles bottle on my wish list, too, and I always appreciate a tip for a good value white Rhone. Thanks again for participating!

Mallika said...

It's been a long time since I visited here. Thanks for the tips on Summer Sipping. They'll be coming in very handy!!

Dale Cruse said...

Sounds like you had as much fun with your Rhone-style white as I did on this Wine Blogging Wednesday!