Wine

8 white wines to drink before winter is over

Back in 1981 I got a giggle out of a movie called “Body Heat,” wherein Kathleen Turner and William Hurt steamed up the screen in a sweltering Florida town that didn’t appear to have any air conditioning.

But we did have it, even way back then.

In fact, if it was hot during the holidays, then and now, I would turn my AC down to frigid, build a tiny fireplace fire, break out a bottle of port, the quintessential cold-weather tipple, and have a pleasurable sip or three.

When it was too cold for a picnic, I would plop a checkered tablecloth onto my living room floor, photocopy pictures of ants to scatter, make fried chicken and potato salad, pop a chilled bottle of bubbly and have a cozy indoor picnic.

My point is that in these modern times, we have the technology. We can control our environment — at least briefly. So even if the devil who wears Prada might not approve, it’s becoming more accepted to wear white after Labor Day.

And it follows we also can drink white wine in the winter. In fact, it’s a genuine treat after all the rich red wines we imbibed over the recent holidays.

Also, sometimes a white wine is essential. If you poach a delicate morsel of cod, you don’t want to pair it with a muscular, tannic, high-alcohol barolo or petite sirah, even if the weather outside is frightful. Even if “frightful” means 40 degrees in South Florida.

So let’s put together a list of some nice current white wine releases to drink right now while we wait out the seemingly interminable interlude until spring.

Highly recommended

▪ 2013 La Crema Chardonnay, Russian River Valley, California (100 percent chardonnay): floral aroma, hint of oak, packed with flavors of ripe peaches and candy, spicy, rich, full-bodied and lush, long, fruity finish; $30.

▪ 2014 Chateau Ste. Michelle Sauvignon Blanc, “Horse Heaven Vineyard,” Horse Heaven Hills, Washington (100 percent sauvignon blanc): aromas and flavors of tart pears and white grapefruit, crisp, racy acids, tart finish; $15.

Recommended

▪ 2014 Buried Cane Chardonnay by Middleton Family Winery, Columbia Valley, Washington (89 percent chardonnay, 11 percent semillon): toasty oak and vanilla aromas, flavors of ripe apples and tropical fruit, rich and spicy; $14.

▪ 2014 Handley Cellars Pinot Gris, Anderson Valley, California (100 percent pinot gris): tangerine blossom aromas, flavors of tropical fruit, caramel and spice; $20.

▪ 2014 Davis Bynum Sauvignon Blanc, “Jane’s Vineyard,” Russian River Valley (100 percent sauvignon blanc): hint of oak, flavors of pink grapefruit and pineapples, crisp acids, rich and full-bodied; $25.

▪ 2014 Nine Hats Wines Riesling, Columbia Valley (100 percent riesling): white grapefruit aromas, hint of sweetness, flavors of ripe yellow apples and minerals, long finish; $12.

▪ 2014 Peter Zemmer Pinot Grigio, Alto Adige, Italy: white grapefruit aromas, flavors of ripe pears, light, crisp and lively; $16.

▪ Nonvintage Gloria Ferrer Blanc de Blancs sparkling wine, Carneros, California (100 percent chardonnay): lively bubbles, orange blossom and toast aromas, flavors of minerals and lemon preserves; $22.

Fred Tasker: fredtaskerwine@gmail.com

  Comments