Video: Viognier, Roussanne and Blanc du Bois: The Three Sisters of Texas Wines
Ever think of Texas as a Chardonnay kind of place? I didn’t think so. It can be grown in Texas and even does well in a few locations. If you are looking for some truly satisfying Texas white wines, look for what have rapidly become the “Three Sisters of Texas Wines”: Viognier, Roussanne and Blanc du Bois.
Click the video link above to view a presentation of these three varietals by Pat Brennan owner of Brennan Vineyards in Comanche, Texas.
I have blogged extensively on Texas grown Viognier, Roussanne and Blanc du Bois and the first two were in my personal “Pick Six” wines that were recently featured at the Grand Wine and Food Affair. See: VintageTexas “Wineslinger” Shoots Six Straight in Grand Tasting – http://vintagetexas.com/blog/?p=738. Highlights below:
Brennan Vineyards (www.brennanvineyards.com) Viognier 2008
Medium straw-yellow color wine exudes aromatic fragrances of apricot, honey and orange blossom. On the palate, fresh apricot flavors are joined by white peach in a creamy, smooth approach. Crisp acidity with balanced citrus and fruit flavors carry through a very long and satisfying finish. Attendee comment: “The fruit is ripe and luscious, almost sweet tasting.”
Texas Hills Vineyards (www.texashillsvineyard.com) Roussanne 2007
Roussanne, a white Rhône varietal is a relative newcomer to Texas and still rare as a single varietal wine. Pale straw in color but carries, rich citrus and peach blossom aromas and similar flavors; ripe yet light and crisp character from time spent hanging in the intense sun, but kissed with cool nights on the Texas High Plains. This varietal promises to be excellent for Texas white wine drinkers in the coming years. Attendee comment: “Wow, it’s like a Sauvignon Blanc on Steroids!”
Haak Vineyards (www.haakwine.com) Blanc du Bois
I had a chance to taste two new wines from Texas’ own “Impresario du Bois”, Raymond Haak at Haak Vineyards. He has been a leader in making quality wines from a French American hybrid grape varietal called Blanc du Bois. Raymond has made five differently stylized Blanc du Bois wines: Dry (Green Label), Semi-Sweet (Blue Label), White Port, and more recently his Reserve with oak aging (Dark Green Label) and Blanc du Bois Madeira (short squatty bottle).
I tasted the latter two wines for the first time at the Grand Tasting and was indubitably impressed. The “Reserve” made “sur lie” and oak aged should be a Chardonnay drinkers delight offering a complex mix of crisp citrus and apple aromas overlaying yeasty notes and a dash of toasted oak. The “Madeira” carries the essences of dried apricots, green tea and fresh lemons suspended over sweet caramel cream.
Enjoy the video, then try the wines for even more enjoyment.