Wine of the Day: Geyser Peak Sauvignon Blanc; Geyser Pinot Grigio; K-J Zinfandel


Geyser Peak Sauvignon Blanc California 2012, $12

(Courtesy Geyser Peak)

(Courtesy Geyser Peak)

In wine circles, this Sauvignon Blanc is the “it” wine. It has flavor, complexity and acidity. It’s New World, Southern Hemisphere and France rolled into one. The melon and tropical fruit of California; the gooseberry and grapefruit of Marlborough, New Zealand; the citrus and minerality of France. Winemaker Ondine Chattan uses grapes from diverse regions of California to amp up the flavor profile. It’s such an expressive wine: Inhale the tart citrus, herbal aromas that say “drink me with local seafood; sip me with a salad; better yet, pour me with savory Asian cuisine.” The magnificent 2012 vintage in California offers the best of everything. Busch’s has it on sale for $9.99.

Geyser Peak Pinot Grigio 2012, $12

Dry, aromatic, layers and layers of flavor. Winemaker Ondine Chattan sources this variety from cool and warm climates to increase the complexity. Cooler vineyards pack the acidic punch for this vintage — providing the racy acidity, minerality and floral tones. Warmer regions give it tropical fruit and weight. The minerality and tart citrus fruit load the back palate and finish. It’s an ideal wine for hors d’oeuvres or to pour with fresh seafood. It’s very different, with a pleasing bite in the finish that I especially like.

Kendall-Jackson Proprietor’s Reserve Zinfandel Mendocino 2011, $17

This wine hails from Jess Jackson’s original vineyard. Zinfandel likes the cool spring and short blast of summer heat followed by early fall. It gives structure to the wine. The 2011 vintage was a tough one for California — and they don’t have many of these. Early rains and cold temps gave winemakers fits. This Zin seems to have escaped unscathed. Fruit is bold and expressive, tannins are smooth, acidity gives the package structure. Think raspberry, blackberry, solid tannins and clove. It has 14 percent Petite Sirah added, which makes it even more serious with a much deeper color and black peppery notes.

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