Rhône white blends are among the toughest to pull off in California, but Atmosphere does a terrific job. Among the top of its class, it’s bone dry, crisp and minerally, with subtle, complex flavors of white peach, papaya, fig, vanilla and buttercream flavors. Really good. Try as an alternative to a rich Chardonnay.
A beautiful wine, dry, complex and crisp, and easily one of the best white Rhône-style bottlings of the vintage. It shows brilliantly clean acidity that provides a brisk mouthfeel to the apricot, pineapple and pear flavors that rest on a firm ground of minerals. Great as a richer, more exotic alternative to Sauvignon Blanc.
On the toasty, oaky side, but with just enough citrus and melon fruit to support it, this is a creamy, lush rendition of Saint-Péray that does a nice job integrating the oak into the body of the wine. The final impression is one of harmony and elegance. Drink now-2012.
Round and fruity, with a tasty mix of apples, peaches and citrus, this tastes like fruit, not barrel, and would be an excellent choice if a hearty, non-oaky white wine is called for. There’s good balance and length, with a resonant hint of minerality in the finish.
A very fragrant, dark-honey Marsanne-Roussanne blend from Ramona Valley, an AVA within San Diego County. The wine’s blend is 55% Marsanne, 45% Roussanne, a well-integrated co-mingling of the two with jasmine and apricot flavors and a bit of a bite on the finish.
At just 12.6% alcohol, this might seem underripe for warm climate varieties, but it tastes perfectly full and nicely balanced. It’s tart and lemony, to be sure, and in fact makes a fine accompaniment to fresh-shucked oysters.
Fruity, rich and honey-sweet, with decadent flavors of peach and pear jam, apricot, pineapple, green apple and vanilla, enhanced with sweet, smoky oak. There’s a good spine of acidity for balance.