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by Fred McMillin
Your author had the wrong uniform (football referee) but the right wines when he conducted our annual Wine World Series.
It's Wine World Series time. Nine Imports were matched against nine, same-price California counterparts. Usually, each pair was of the same vintage and same dominant grape.
A different pair is matched each inning. The scoring:
Our most valuable player will be the wine that puts its team ahead to stay. That is, they score the run that gives their team the lead that they never relinquish. That will be our Wine of the Day.
|Inning||Import||Cal.||Price||The Winner||Scoreboard (Runs)|
|1st||X||$6||'99 Torrontes, Santa Julia Winery, Argentina||1||0|
|2nd||X||$8||'98 Malbec, Santa Julia Winery, Argentina||2||0|
|3rd||X||$9||'97 Sauvignon Blanc,Yorkville Cellars, Mendocino County||2||1|
|4th||X||$13||'97 Brouilly Beaujolais, Chateau de La Chaise, France||4||1|
|5th||X||$15||'98 Reserve Chardonnay Jacob's Creek, Padthaway, Australia||6||1|
|6th||X||$15||'97 Zinfandel, Clos La Chance, El Dorado County||6||3|
|7th||X||$22||'98 Chardonnay, Acacia Carneros||6||6|
|8th||X||$27||'95 Amarone Montresor Dalla Valpolicella, Italy||9||6|
|9th||X||$40||'97 Io (Syrah blend) Santa Barbara County||9||9|
YIKES. EXTRA INNINGS!
From the bullpen comes Lacryma Christie del Vesuvio Bianco from Italy versus a Pinot Grigio (white) from California. It's SUDDEN DEATH.
|10th||X||$16||'99 Pinot Grigio, Bargetto, California||9||11|
Hooray! We have our...
Pinot Grigio (Italian) or Pinot Gris (France) is no longer a rising star in Oregon. It is edging into world class. There's interest in California but if you had to make money from a vineyard, would you plant it with sure-profit Chardonnay... or a hot-button Viognier? A modest number of Golden State vintners are trying the Grigio nevertheless, and Bargetto is one of them.
We reviewed their 1997 vintage in "The Gray Grape", WineDay, June 10, 1998. This 1999 vintage scored even higher. In fact, it's the first California Grigio my panel has tasted that is right on the cusp of a HIGHLY RECOMMENDED rating. Light, crisp, refreshing,but with a little complexity, too.
Contact—Martin Bargetto, (831) 475-2258, FAX (831) 475-2664
Food with Grigio—One of America's finest wine writers, Bob Thompson, wrote in the S.F.Examiner, that a dry Pinot Grigio like this one pairs beautifully with charcoal-grilled salmon, dry-basted with plenty of salt and a tad of sugar. (I had a chance to verify this at a white wine tasting in the German consulate in San Francisco. He and his wife are a most considerate and low-key couple, not flaunting their vast knowledge of wine and food. and it was clear why Bob has over 100,000 wine notes; that note-taking pen never stopped.)
About the Writer
Fred McMillin, a veteran wine writer, has taught wine history for 30 years on three continents. In 1995, the Academy of Wine Communications honored Fred with one of only 22 Certificates of Commendation awarded to American wine writers. For information about the wine courses he teaches every month at either San Francisco State University or San Francisco City College (Fort Mason Division), please fax him at (415) 567-4468.
This page created October 2000