Friday, August 19, 2011

Cline Sonoma Coast Viognier `10 $13.99 ***

Ever since I've been back from Virginia, I have been obsessed with two things - Grits with Shrimp, and viognier. I scour wine shops for viognier now. I found this Cline `10 while trolling the aisles of a suburban LI liquor store. We have had Cline Ancient Vine Zinfandel and liked it, I figured that their viognier would be a safe bet. It was.

Cline Sonoma Coast Viognier `10 is a rich, complex white wine with bright, fruity overtones (peach) and a refreshing acidic cleansing, with a faint hint of sweetness at the finish. I love the varietal, and this bottle was a true representation. With a slight minerality giving it depth, this is a good mouthful of wine. It is 14% ETOH, which packs a subtle whollop, so subtle that it is like a sucker punch, because it is so easy to drink, you can wake up in the morning thinking "what hit me?". If it is only a few of you for dinner, resist the temptation to open another bottle when the first one is gulped down. Or, pop them, keep filling your glasses and have a great night - but remember..."Anna warned you!"

We had it with Poulet au vin jaune. What do you ask? Some fancy French name??? Well, yeah. The night before, we had a bottle of wine that wasn't table worthy. The second that S. tasted it, a light went off in her head and she said "we can make Poulet au vin jaune with it". Then she ran to her computer, came back and handed us a recipe. This is where I tell you that S. speaks seven languages. Fluently. French is simply an extended part of her vocabulary. I speak menu French, and even then, I sound mentally diminished when I speak. S gave me a cursory run through of the recipe, assured me that she had full faith, and that was that.

The next day, JPH did the shopping - coming home with some beautiful dried morels that really were the crowing glory of the dish. I took a deep breath, poured my self a glass of wine and well, I cooked it. S. laughed at me when I balked at first. My year of living in Belgium paid off finally! The dish with the fancy French name really is just fricassee of chicken in wine with mushrooms. Ultimately, the house smelled amazing, the chicken was tasty, and the Cline Viognier went perfectly with it.

It was a triumph on all fronts. Well done Cline Cellars, and well done me.

The morel of the story? Just stew it! : )

This pic was styled by NS.
Just a reminder that not everyone is pairing wine with their dinners!

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