After sipping lots of rich, toasty chardonnays, and opening a good number of zesty sauvignon blancs, it is always fun to see what else is out there for the tasting from Napa Valley.

Riesling has been around from the beginning, having been planted by some of the first German immigrants to land in the valley. Upon arrival, they took to the hills, in places like Spring Mountain, where the finest grapes were grown back home.

If you want to know what all the hubbub is about this sommelier-loved grape, taste this dry-style Riesling from Smith Madrone, which has been planted up on their mountain property since the early 1970s. It has the grape’s renowned nerve, structure and a range of flavors: an orchard of different apple varieties, herb and minerality.

Surprise dinner guests with vegetable spring rolls or bread crisps topped with thin slices of pork tenderloin on a bed of apple compote, along with this Riesling ($27), and you’re sure to get a rave or two.

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. For questions, concerns contact Catherine Seda Bugue, (707) 337-6840 or cbugue@gmail.com.

— Catherine Seda Bugue is the Star’s tasting panel writer.

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