Five Whites for Summer Nights

Summer screams for crisp, clean acidity to wash down heat of the day. These picks deliver with nary a hint of buttery oak. Can I get an amen?

Cadaretta SBS 2014
(Columbia Valley; $23)
This 80/20 blend of sauvignon blanc and sémillon (hence, SBS) varietals begs to be poured on a warm summer night. Pineapple and lime zest carry through from nose to tongue, joined by some grassy and slightly spicy notes. The stainless steel tanks used during fermentation mean no oaky residue to compete with the crisp, focused flavors in this wine. Try it with a vegetable course or a spicy Asian dish.

FullSizeRender[1]Ponzi Vineyards Pinot Blanc 2015
(Willamette Valley; $22)
This elegant little ditty took me by surprise. You don’t see much pinot blanc in these parts; it’s more widely known as an Alsatian varietal. Its exotic bouquet leans towards jasmine flowers, lemongrass and lychee fruit, delivered to the palate with a light delicate body. This pinot blanc would be quite lovely with fish, an onion tart or with a quiche at brunch.

Armstrong Family Winery Wild Angels 2014
(Columbia Valley; $18)
Viognier can be such a little helper-bee. In this predominately chardonnay blend, it lends a whiff of petal-power to the nose. Chardonnay makes for a refreshing profile change from citrus-y grapes like sauvignon blanc. It is juicy with a crisp minerality that compliments Asian cuisine and seafood, while feeling equally at home next to your friend’s Michelob Ultra in the ice bucket on her boat.

FullSizeRender[2]Novelty Hill Stillwater Creek Vineyard Viognier 2014
(Columbia Valley; $23)
Though viognier can often be very floral, the bouquet on this wine is mostly juicy peach and apricot with a touch of honeysuckle. The zesty stone fruits hit the palate with bright acidity, even a bit of green apple, then mellow to a hint of warm spice in the finish. A perfect wine for a pre-dinner snack on the patio or paired with sweet succulent shellfish, Moroccan spices, and soft creamy cheeses.

Novelty Hill Stillwater Creek Vineyard Roussanne 2014
(Columbia Valley; $23)
No, you’re not seeing double. Winemaker Mike Januik blended a touch of his viognier (17%) with roussanne (83%) – another white varietal grown at Stillwater Creek Vineyard. The combination gives a lightly floral, spiced pear aroma that dances around a delicate citrus core on the palate.

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