By — D.M.,
Recommendations *** Exceptional ** Excellent * Very Good Prices are approximate. Check Winesearcher.com to verify availability, or ask a favorite wine store to order through a distributor.
Here are six white wines from around the world that will help start your warm-weather explorations.
Juve y Camps Brut Nature Reserva de la Familia Cava 2007
Penedes, Spain, $20
This is high-class cava that tastes like a twice-as-expensive champagne. Maybe too pricey for those everyday celebrations, but perhaps once a week . . . ?
Winebow: Available in the District at Bacchus Wine Cellar, Dupont Market, Lion’s Fine Wine & Spirits, Magruder’s; on the list at Ceiba, Pizzeria Paradiso in Dupont Circle and Georgetown, Sequoia, Sova Espresso & Wine, Veranda, Vinoteca. Available in Maryland at Beer & Wine Co. and Georgetown Square Beer & Wine in Bethesda, Belby Discount Beer & Wine in Rockville, Grape Expectations in Gaithersburg; on the list at Jaleo in Bethesda. Available in Virginia at J Emerson Fine Wines & Cheese in Richmond, Market Cellars in Reston; on the list at Velocity 5 Sports Bar in Sterling.
Vina Taboexa Albarino 2011
★★1 / 2
Rias Baixas, Spain, $16
Albarino has become fashionable of late, which means many wines of variable quality are available in this market. The Taboexa shows the tart acidity characteristic of the grape, plus loads of fruit to back it up. Excellent with any citrus seafood dish, as well as garlicky or spicy tapas.
Dionysus: Available in the District at Cork & Fork, D’Vines, Rodman’s, Wagshal’s Market; on the list at Bodega. Available in Maryland at Balducci’s, Bradley Food & Beverage and Cork & Fork in Bethesda; Wine Cellars of Annapolis. On the list at Sushi-Ko in Friendship Heights. Available in Virginia at Ashburn Wine Shop, Balducci’s in McLean and Alexandria, Cheesetique in Arlington and Alexandria, Cork & Fork in Gainesville, Ellwood Thompson’s Local Market and River City Cellars in Richmond, Grand Cru Wine Bar & Bistro in Arlington, Unwined in Alexandria and Belleview.
Lake Chalice Wines Cracklin’ Savie Sauvignon Blanc
Marlborough, New Zealand, $19
This is an unusual wine, which is why I like it. It’s a New Zealand sauvignon blanc, with the characteristic grassy flavors, and it has a mild spritz from carbonation. Surprise your friends with this to open your summer patio parties.
Elite: Available in the District at Cleveland Park Wine and Spirits, MacArthur Beverages, Rodman’s, Schneider’s of Capitol Hill. Available in Maryland at Bradley Food & Beverage, Cork & Fork in Bethesda, Wine Cellars of Annapolis. Available in Virginia at Cheesetique in Arlington, Rick’s Wine & Gourmet in Alexandria.
E Guigal Cotes du Rhone 2010★★
Rhone Valley, France, $16
This blend of viognier and marsanne shows northern Rhone valley white wine at its affordable best. Excellent with lighter seafood dishes.
M Touton Selection: Widely available in the District and Maryland. Available in Virginia at the Frenchman’s Cellar in Culpeper, Planet Wine & Gourmet, Unwined in Alexandria, Vino Market in Midlothian, the Wine House in Fairfax, various Wegmans locations; on the list at La Bergerie and Yves Bistro in Alexandria, Cafe Tatti in McLean.
Novy Family Wines Four Mile Creek White 2010/2011
★1 / 2
Here’s an uncommon blend of chardonnay, Gewurztraminer, viognier and sauvignon blanc. The Gewurz dominates the nose with its scent of litchi, but the chardonnay is evident on the palate with its rich mouth feel. This is a wine that defies conventions and makes you want to enjoy it for what it is: darn tasty. The vintage is changing over from 2010 to 2011. Both are good.
Bacchus in the District and Maryland, Robins Cellars in Virginia: Available in Maryland at 1311 Beer & Wine in Mount Airy, Cranbrook Liquors in Cockeysville. Available in Virginia at Chain Bridge Cellars in McLean, Galloping Grape in Warrenton.
Conde Villar Vinho Verde 2011
★1 / 2
Refreshing and simple, with lemon-lime flavors and a hint of spritz for oomph.
Country Vintner: Available in the District at Cork Market, Kogod Liquor, Local Vine Cellar, Virginia Market. Available in Maryland at Georgetown Square Beer & Wine in Bethesda, I.M. Wine in Fulton. Available in Virginia at Red, White & Bleu in Falls Church.