Saturday, February 14, 2009

Ravenswood Vitner's Blend Chardonnay (2007)

This Valentine's Day evening, as we anxiously await the impending arrival of our second child, Leah decided to make some French onion soup. Apparently the recipe called for some white wine, so that meant the rest of the bottle for me! Since Leah cooks quite a bit with wine, she usually keeps some cheaper wine on hand for such occasions. Tonight she busted out a Ravenswood Vitner's Blend Chardonnay. She thinks it was around $5 at Trader Joe's.

As I've mentioned before, I tend to like my white wines dry, and usually cheaper whites are sweeter than ... um ... sugar-coated honey? Sorry, I know there's a clever joke to be made there but I'm drawing a blank. Anyway, this general observation caused me to be a bit concerned. The wine poured a pale straw color with a very thin appearance. The aroma suggested your typical sweet white; sweet grape and sugar aromas with some pear and a slight sour note.

The wine was definitely sweet up front. Cane sugar with white grape and apple sweetness greeted the tongue. The finish was likewise sweet; not dessert wine sweet but sweeter than I usually like. However, something strange happened. I finished the first sip and I wanted another one! I think the reason is that there's a nice tart, acidic finish that cuts the sweetness. The end result is a cheap, sweet white wine I actually like!

Is this an earth-shattering wine? Definitely not. But I think it'll be a great wine to keep on hand for nights just like this (by which I mean nights where we need white wine for cooking; not nights when Leah is due to give birth). Given the minuscule price tag*, on the patented Chibebräu Wine scale (skip it, only if it's on sale, or buy it again) this is definitely a buy it again .

*Just an FYI, various websites list this as between $10 and $11 a bottle, so it may have been on super sale.

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