Today, I’m formalizing a core component of Vint-ed, what I’m calling The Daily Sip – one notable wine (or two) that represents excellence and value in its class. Since I started writing about wine in 2002, and over the course of 350 weekly columns for MSNBC.com and now Vint-ed and Reuters, I’ve considered this my main mission. I will, of course, continue to bring you wine news and commentary as well.
A lot of 2009 California sauvignon blancs have been released in recent weeks and they demonstrate a continuing trend: California sauvignons are getting better and better. I’ll be pointing to a number of them in coming weeks, but one that particularly stands out is Frei Brothers’ 2009 Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc. With a $20 suggested price (I’ve also noticed that sauvignon prices are creeping up), this one is light, expressive and perfectly balanced, which is everything I look for in sauvignon, whether from California, the Loire Valley, New Zealand or Chile. It shows lemon-lime and green apple notes with an underlying minerality. Part of the wine received “sur lie” aging for a couple of months, which helps provide an impressively long finish. For fish and shellfish, salads and other lighter dishes and for sipping as an aperitif. Alcohol is 13.9 percent. Received as a press sample.