Saturday, September 6, 2008

A "Kiss" From Missouri - Montelle Winery 2007 Dry Vignoles

My first shipment of Missouri wine finally arrived. I had ordered wine from Montelle Winery and Westphalia Vineyards. The Westphalia wines have not yet arrived but yesterday I received my bottles from Montelle. As today was a hot day I decided to try my chilled 2007 Dry Vignoles. I had high hopes since this wine was the 2008 Governor's Cup winner for best Missouri wine.

First, what the heck is Vignoles? For those of you who have not expanded your palate beyond what Andrea Robinson calls the "Big Six" grapes, let me do the introductions. Vignoles is a hybrid white grape popular in the Midwest and Northeast (particularly Missouri and the Finger Lakes area of New York). For Missouri it appears to be one of the "work horse" grapes, producing wine that made my beau think it was a Riesling and in fact most literature will tell you that in fact the wines do tend to be reminiscent of German Rieslings. The wines produced can be anywhere from dry to sweet (like a Riesling).

OK, enough talk... now the wine. Even though this pretty little wine is called "dry" to me it seemed a bit more "off-dry", just a touch of residual sugar remaining. The wine has the beautiful straw coloring that would mark a nice Chardonnay. The bouquet brought fruit and flowers, primarily a floral rendition of strawberry and citrus (pineapple?). The taste was like a natural fruit salad of apricot, citrus and pineapple (picked up from the nose perhaps) with a touch of natural sweetness. Nice mouth feel, enough acid that the sweetness doesn't seem cloying in the mouth and a nice medium-length finish.

If this enjoyable wine is any indication of what Missouri has been doing with its wine in the almost 20 years since I last sampled some I will be a happy "amant de vin" indeed! Thanks Tim for turning me onto Montelle's offerings... now if I can only get my Westphalia shipment!!!

Watch for more reviews of "Show Me" State wines.

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