As a general rule, I am not a fan of “phoning it in.” Not in anything, particularly in writing here on 1WD.
I’d love to tell you all that the demands of holiday planning with a first-grader around, hosting Christmas for out of town visitors, and various writing gigs are keeping me from writing up for you my thoughts on some of the recent visits to stellar producers that I have had, but it’s not the complete picture. I have all of that and other shizz going down right now, and I am finding it difficult to do anything requiring focus and producing interesting thoughts with regularity.
I’m not fishing for sympathy here (though I wouldn’t turn it down), but I thought that the collective 1WD readership ought to know that in the near term, I might not be getting to the things I want to get to within the time-frames that you or I might want.
And so, the producer deep dives are going to have to wait a bit, but I did manage to get stoked enough about two recent white wine samples, the kind that delivered a brief, warming respite during the Winter of my discontent, and overachieved at their price points, to boot. So consider this a post made from under the holiday-decorated emotional floorboards, with the hopes that I will be reconnecting with regular 1WD drinking and merriment sooner than later…
2012 Edetària Seleccio Old Vines White (Terra Alta, $20)
Ah, Garnacha Blanca, you are so misunderstood; so often spoofilated into a high-octane melon-juice of a wine. Fortunately, the sixty-year-old GB vines (planted on what they call a “fossilized sand dune”) that are used to produce Edetària’s Seleccio offer up much, much more than that simplistic view. This is a gorgeously fragranced white, gentle in its display of charms but not without its potency. It’s liberally applying the oil and heady, floral perfume, squeezing the acidity from fresh citrus and tropical fruits, and grounding it all with stony minerals. That this wine can be had for about twenty clams makes it a bit of a steal. Just don’t expect the melon juice.
2011 Bonny Doon Le Cigare Blanc Beeswax Vineyard (Arroyo Seco, $28)
Randall Grahm and Bonny Doon produced only about 1600 cases of this wine from the 2011 vintage, another Grenache Blanc, only here with about 38% and Rousanne mixed in, as well. From my experience, it might be the best LCB they have yet put forward, and its $28 price tag seems a trifle compared to the geektastic quality drinking to be had from a bottle of this overachiever. Pear and tropical fruits provide the richness, but what really makes this wine is the vibrancy of it on the palate. The acidity is so well integrated with the tannin (yes, white wine skin tannin) that I imagine this white will continue to surprise in its liveliness several years down the road. All in all, the combo of rich fruitiness, low-ish abv (12.5%), pith, and vibrancy make it both a keeper and a delicious way to get dinner guests talking if you’re opting to drink it now.