The weekend weather is still not quite spring-like but we didn't let the continuing spring showers dampen our enthusiasm. We fired up the grill, opened the golf umbrella and grilled some fish and steaks. One of my favorites is grilled salmon with an Asian marinade and grilled shrimp on skewers. Our guests also enjoyed grilled steaks and burgers and they brought with them a couple of wines to try.
2006 Chateau de Goulaine Muscadet Sevre & Maine Sur Lie -- a crisp white wine with notes of citrus and just a hint of the sea and flavors of lemon zest, melon and a touch of pear. Very good with the grilled shrimp basted with a marinade of olive oil and lemon and was a nice compliment to a simply dressed tomato salad.
Muscadet is not to be confused with Muscat. It is a white wine that does not get reviews and press as given to most other commercially popular wines, and is a wine you should try especially if you enjoy shellfish and seafood and if you also enjoy Sauvignon Blanc.
Muscadet is grown in the western area of the Loire Valley near the Atlantic Ocean. The wine can have intense minerality. It is the "house" wine in many of the region's restaurants and is served with oysters from the local waters. The best wines are from the Sevre et Maine area. (See future post for more details on Muscadet.)
Sauvignon Republic Stellenbosch Sauvignon Blanc 2007 -- has subtle tropical aromas with hints of passion fruit and some minerality which are elements from its "terrior" or its surroundings and climate. It has the usual herbaceous nuances and a crisp acidity. Can't go wrong with food friendly Sauvignon Blanc especially in Spring and Summer.
Frog's Leap 2006 Petite Sirah Napa Valley -- has a deep dark color with notes of blueberry cassis, tobacco smoke and a bit of damp earthiness to it. It has nice acidity and supple tannins with a long finish. You may not believe this, but it was really great with the dark chocolate cake we had for dessert. "If you like it, that's all that matters!" is one of my favorite pairing styles.
2007 Col di Sasso is a Tuscan cuvee of Cabernet Sauvignon and Sangiovese from Banfi. It has red berry, cherry and a hint of violet aromas with bright acidity and mild tannins.