Tag Archives: white wine

Wine Pairing & Giveaway Winner


First off, it’s time to announce the winner to last week’s Wine Bible Giveaway:

Allison at Life’s a Bowl!

Allison, I’ve sent an email your way. Please email me the address to which you’d like your Wine Bible shipped. Thanks so much to all who participated.

Some of you requested to learn a little bit more about wine pairings. I always love this topic. In the past I’ve made lists of wine pairings such as Cheese and Wine Pairings, Thanksgiving Wine Pairings, Wines for the BBQ, and Wines for Easter.

Today I thought that maybe I should offer up just one wine pairing from time to time. I could share one easy wine pairing for something you could make tonight and could pair with a wine you could easily pick up tonight, too. So here it is…

Pinot Grigio


Basil Pesto

Here I’m talking your basic, classic basil pesto and a nice, crisp Pinot Grigio. Generally, the Italian sort will work best. Basil pesto is an Italian concoction after all. The crisp acidity of the Pinot Grigio cuts through the fat in the pesto’s olive oil. This pairing will make you happy.

Basil Pesto is so simple to make, too. It just takes some garlic, olive oil, fresh basil and parmesan. Pine nuts or other nuts are optional, too. Here are a few variations for those looking for a specific recipe, as well as a few ways to use pesto! Or if you are in a pinch, you can always buy a jar of the prepared stuff. I’m not judging.

Pesto is great over pasta (add some veggies or chicken!), drizzled over chicken or pork, swirled into a side of green beans or spread on toasted slices of French bread. Mmm…

If you are changing up your pesto – say, to make cilantro pesto, for example – the pairing might not work as well. I think a Sauvignon Blanc might work a little better with a cilantro pesto. A creamy pesto might go better with a heavier white, too. So for this pairing, I’d just keep it simple.

But remember, the best wine pairing is one that you enjoy! So go out and experiment!

What is your favorite way to eat pesto?

Do you have a favorite wine pairing with pesto?

Happy Wine Wednesday!


Drink Me: Pinot Gris


I can’t lie, I stole this title idea from my grapefriend. But I also like how it rhymes. And I’m also here to tell you, it’s summer and you should be drinking Pinot Gris!

Pinot Gris is often forgotten. When my friend Stacy and I enjoy wine together, it’s almost always red. However, when I saw it on a menu when the two of us dined at the Redwood Room this weekend {stay tuned tomorrow!}, I asked for a taste.

Oh, Pinot Gris, how did I forget you?!

This little beauty was so good, we ordered a bottle. I usually think that most of the more affordable bottles in a restaurant are mediocre… at best. This wine is an exception! We were pleasantly surprised.

Four Graces Pinot Gris - Willamette Valley {pronounced will-AM-met, damn it!}, Oregon

Four Graces Pinot Gris – Willamette Valley {pronounced will-AM-it, damn it!}, Oregon

So what’s the difference between Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio? Well, they are actually the same grape. It’s just called Pinot Gris in French and Pinot Grigio in Italian.

However, the style of wine is usually different. Pinot Grigios from Italy are light, crisp and acidic with lots of citrus notes. The Pinot Gris I drink from France tend to be rounder, less acidic with more fruit and floral notes shining through. Some of that is due to the cooler climate – the terroir, if you will.

In the wine world, Pinot Gris/Grigio is oftened labeled in other regions according to the traditional style it is most like. Many in California are labeled Pinot Grigio, while those in the cooler, northern state of Oregon are labeled Pinot Gris. Winemakers can still label Pinots as they wish, but I’ve found this is a good indicator when you are looking for the style you like!

I have been reunited with my love of Pinot Gris – a perfect summer white wine!

If you’ve had both, which style do you prefer? Pinot Gris or Pinot Grigio?

What’s your favorite summer white wine {or other refreshing beverage}?


Torrontés – The White for Everyone


It’s no secret that I’ve been into craft beers much more than wine lately. I’m actually sipping one – the Indeed LSD Honey Ale {more on that in another post!} – while I write this Wine Wednesday post. And while I tend to be more of a red wine drinker, occasionally a white wine comes along that makes my palate sing! Such happened the first time I tried a Torrontés.

Torrontés is a white grape grown in Argentina. Over the years, The Traveling Vineyard has carried one every now and again. But it’s still little known to the general wine-drinking population in the U.S. It’s a wine, though, that I like to describe as The White Wine for Everyone.


Torrontés served in my Connoisseur’s Club glass that I earned through The Traveling Vineyard

At Wine Tastings where I’ve brought this varietal, I’ve had red wine, white wine and sweet wine drinkers alike go crazy over this wine. It’s probably because it’s so versatile. Although it’s not technically a dessert wine, it’s got floral aromas with a fruitiness that can be perceived as sweet. It pairs well with spices, Asian foods, guacamole and smoked meats. What’s more is that I’ve discovered that it can sometimes work well with a lemon cookie or meringue pie! Click here for a lemon trifle recipe given to me by one of my tasting guests.

A bonus pairing recently discovered by a fellow consultant: lemon scones. Can we say Brunch Wine, anyone?!

It’s the perfect wine for summer, especially for those who typically drink reds, but who really would like to have a favorite white as a sipping thirst quencher during the heat. Additionally, Torrontés isn’t always so easy to find. The Traveling Vineyard gets theirs in small quantities from smaller vineyards. Once it’s gone it’s gone!

Kesari Argentine Torrontés - The Traveling Vineyard

Kesari Argentine Torrontés – $15.99 from The Traveling Vineyard

Tip: Don’t serve Torrontés {or any white wine for that matter} too cold. It should not be served straight from the fridge. Take it out and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Or, alternatively, slide one of these wine chillers on to your room temperature white to cool it down. Drinking a white wine too cold will mask the flavors!

What’s your summer wine or beverage of choice?