A trio of excellent white wines from three excellent wineries heralds the arrival of spring with visions of elegant white cloth picnics and casual backyard barbecues.
No corkscrew required for Terra d’Oro 2013 chenin blanc viognier ($16); the screw cap closure makes it simple. The blend of two varietals produces a clean selection with tropical fruit notes. Floral aromas of spring blossoms mirror a sunny afternoon. Papaya, juicy mango and pineapple flavors entice the palate. Pour this chilled wine with marinated shrimp and kiwi salad or spicy ricotta on pita chips.
Folie a Deux 2012 Russian River Valley chardonnay ($18) is a classic example of this extraordinary varietal. Sunlight rays bounce off a glass with golden hues and baked apple, cream and oak aromas. The slightly elevated alcohol (14 percent) unveils cinnamon, pear and muted citrus flavors. Melted goat cheese topped with toasted pine nuts is the perfect opening course with this wine.
Napa Cellars 2013 sauvignon blanc ($18) is sassy and lively as a day at the beach. Scents of freshly mown grass invigorate with cascades of pineapple, guava and juicy nectarine. Melon, kiwi, green apple and tangy grapefruit flavors linger on the palate. Serve this wine slightly chilled along side platters of avocado with mayo and lemon sauce, Cajun fried chicken wings and nutty cheeses.