Indaba Chenin Blanc

As it’s holiday time and I’m going to be celebrating with friends and family on whom I want to focus my attention, I’m sharing another archival tasting note here now.  I thought this wine was interesting enough to save these notes, and I hope you find them worth a read.

Before I post the notes, though, please accept my warmest wishes to all of my friends and fellow bloggers for a VERY MERRY HOLIDAY SEASON!!

oenophilogical_xmas2016Winemaker: Indaba
Varietal: Chenin Blanc
Vintage: 2014
Appellation: Western Cape, South Africa
Price: $9.99 at Whole Foods

Notes: This Chenin Blanc was unexpectedly dry at 13.5% alcohol.  What a nice surprise!  It was pale yellow with scents of nectarine, honey and dusty floral notes.  Acidity was good, and it was light-bodied.  On the palate I found nectarine, lemon grass and hints of spice.

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Sutter Home Chenin Blanc

I’m sputtering to a close on the transfer of posts from Blogarhythms.  Hadn’t yet brought over anything on this particular varietal.
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Sutter Home is well known in the affordable wine market as a ubiquitous product and a pretty consistent performer.  What is nice, though, is that they haven’t given up on wines that so many of the boutique and “upper end” vineyards dismiss.  Chenin Blanc is one of those that I’m glad to see they produce.   Do you have friends (or acquaintances/guests) who put ice cubes in their Chardonnay because it’s too strong/flavorful?  Maybe this varietal is more their speed.  And, seriously, people should drink what they like – not just what’s popular or in fashion.

Vineyard:     Sutter Home
Varietal:       Chenin Blanc
Vintage:       2008
Appellation: California
Price:          $6.99

Notes:     At 12% alcohol, this Chenin Blanc is a bit dryer than some others on the market.  Even so, it still has the characteristic sweetness which provides for honey on the tongue along with lemon and peaches and a nice apricot zing at the finish.  I could see this particular wine as an alternative to a Riesling.  Although the flavors are lighter and not as intense as are typical in a Riesling, the flavor profile is not unlike some Rieslings I’ve had.  It isn’t really dry, true.  So if you absolutely insist on a dry wine, this won’t be your choice.  But with summer not too distant, I think this could be a nice little sipper for an outdoor barbeque.   For those who like wine with dessert, you could consider this selection esp. if you are serving a dessert with more delicate flavors.  The price makes it easy to be generous with your guests when you’re entertaining.

Important:  I am not a professional sommelier or wine connoisseur.  See “About” for the full disclaimer.

Big House White 2011

It seems of late that the American market is becoming more interested in blends.  Or maybe it’s just the stores I frequent.  At any rate, I saw this selection on my local supermarket’s shelves and thought I would give it a try.

Vineyard: Big House Wines
Varietal: White Wine (blend)
Vintage: 2011
Appellation: California
Price: $8.99 at Whole Foods

Notes:   Big House Wines out of Livermore, CA brings us a blend that is quite a mash-up of grape varietals – many among the lesser known or lesser seen – including Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Malvasia Bianca, Orange Muscat, Marsanne, and Muscat Canelli.  Even with the Muscats, Big House has made a dry white at 13% alcohol.  I found it to be quite pleasing with flavors of pear and green apple, some hints of warm spices, a splash of  lime as it moved across the tongue, ending with some grass and honeysuckle on the finish.  It’s fairly light-bodied but surprisingly viscous on the palate.  At $9, why not serve it at a relaxed get-together with friends?  If nothing else, it’ll definitely be a conversation starter.  And I bet it will be enjoyed by anyone who can move past their loyalty to a particular varietal.

Important:  I am not a professional sommelier or wine connoisseur.  Please see “About” for my full disclaimer.