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January 22, 2016 Wine Pick of the Week

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woodbridge sauv blanc Picmonkey2013 Sauvignon Blanc


Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi


Alcohol: 12.9%

Suggested Retail: $ 6.25 (750ml), $ 12 (1.5L)


“Woodbridge wines are good quality, value-priced options from the second label of the Napa Valley winery founded by Robert Mondavi 50 years ago. Woodbridge is just north of the city of Lodi and is included in the Lodi American Viticultural Area (AVA).

“The Mondavi family has a long history with the Lodi and Woodbridge growing regions (both the late Robert and his brother, Peter, the 101-year old patriarch of Charles Krug Winery, graduated from Lodi High School in the early 1930s). Grapegrowing here goes back much farther than that, however, and there are some still-productive vineyards that were planted in the 19th Century.

"As land costs have skyrocketed in growing regions nearer the coast, particularly in Napa, California’s wine industry has relied more and more on Lodi for good fruit at prices allowing them to produce wines affordable for everyday drinking.

“Sauvignon Blanc is produced all over the world. It is a wine that can exhibit many different personalities. In recent years New Zealand has produced an extremely grassy style that has become popular, in spite of the fact that some might regard it as an acquired taste—or acquired aroma. Some of the grapes for this week’s ‘Pick’ may have come from vineyards in coastal California, but most are from Lodi. Much of the fruit is from the Sauvignon Musque clone, which tends to yield an aromatic quality in this grape variety.

“We found this week’s Pick, the 2013 Sauvignon Blanc from Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi, easy-to-like. This wine is nicely aromatic with a definitely floral nose. It is fermented in stainless steel, employing a process called sur lie, which adds some richness and complexity. Overall, it shows a fair amount of citrus with a background of dried herbs and is in a style that most consumers will enjoy more than the aggressive examples of this variety.”

Food Affinity: “Sauvignon Blanc is the classic wine pairing with goat cheeses, particularly chèvre. However, it’s an appropriate companion to many more familiar foods—almost anything that you’d think might call for a white wine. The Woodbridge Sauvignon Blanc would go well with many fish dishes. We’d be happy to pour it with cracked Dungeness crab or filet of sole.”

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