2019 Cuveé Blanc
Jeff’s Corner 7-3-20
Before we take a peak at our brand new 2019 Cuveé Blanc, I’d like to take a moment and wish everyone a very thoughtful Fourth of July. With the 4th falling on Saturday, it will be a long, busy weekend for all, and I’d like to urge us all to be safe, and to please respect the safety of others.
Now, let’s move on to the new Cuveé. “Cuveé” means blend, and it’s a derivative of the word “Cuverie” which is the French word for the production facility. (We call our production facility “the tank room,” which is much more Texan.) Cuveé is most often associated with Champagnes, which are typically a blend of wines from different vintages.
Cuveé Blanc has been part of our portfolio at Grape Creek for at least 16 years. In the past, it has been blends of many different grapes, and I remember one from years ago that was Chardonnay, Semillon, and Chenin Blanc.
For many years, Jason’s blend remained pretty consistent, with varying percentages of Viognier, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscat Canelli. Last, year he broke tradition with the addition of a small amount (4.4%) of Trebbiano, and this year we see an increase in Trebbiano, no Pinot Grigio, and, for the first time, a bit of Riesling. This year, we have 47% Viognier, 21.5% Trebbiano, 18.7% Sauvignon Blanc, 8% Muscat Canelli, and 4.8% Riesling. The ABV is 12.7%.
Trebbiano, surprisingly, is one of the world’s most widely planted grape varietals due in part to its high yield and versatility. Originally from central Italy, it dates back to Roman times and by law in Tuscany, it has to be blended into Chianti.
With some big shoes to fill (the ’18 Cuveé won a Gold at this year’s San Francisco Chronicle competition, and the ’17 was Best of Class at the same event), the 2019 will do just fine.
Okay, now it’s time to pull the cork! The color of our 2019 Cuveé Blanc is a brilliant, pale yellow and shows summery tropical fruit aromas of pineapple, banana and cantaloupe supported by orange blossom, honeysuckle and an alluring whisper of butterscotch.The palate is clean and fresh, with a teasing bit of spiciness that delightfully compliments the wine’s brisk acidity. As we have come to expect from Jason and gang, the wine features great finesse and balance with a lush mid-palate that makes this a very complete wine in texture.
Let’s pair this with an orange-glazed Cornish game hen with tender young carrots and wild rice. A serving temp of about 45* would work well.
Cheers to all..