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Catherine Bugue

This is the best riesling in Napa Valley. It has been 12 years since I first stepped onto the Smith-Madrone property high up on Spring Mountain and tasted this wine for the first time; I’ve hardly missed a vintage since.

It’s the kind of wine you create an evening around: invite friends over, pour this crisp riesling ($27) with pot-sticker appetizers or a dinner of Asian-style chicken (light soy sauce, ginger, honey and garlic sauce) or pork tenderloin stuffed with apples and dried apricots.

If you want a simple fruity white, look elsewhere. This riesling is exotic with guava fruit and groves of different citrus flavors from a festive, zingy lime to lemon and grapefruit, along with melon and honeysuckle.

Catherine Bugue is the Star’s tasting panel writer. Her weekly pursuit of a good glass of wine provides a nice supply of choices for the Wine of the Week column. If you’d like to submit a Napa Valley wine for this column, please bring it to the St. Helena Star office, 1200 Main St., Suite C during regular business hours. There’s no guarantee your wine will be chosen to be featured, but all wines will be evaluated and considered.

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