08 April 2006

Wine Blogging Wednesday #20

The theme for Wine Blogging Wednesday #20 is to pick a white wine outside of the big three (Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling), or any blend using those three. I was going to be a smartass and grab some obscure Hungarian white or perhaps one of the foxy Native American varieties. But instead, I was lured away by something that just came on sale at one of the local shops. For my entry, I present the 2005 KWV Steen, which I picked up for around $7.50.

KWV is the giant wine cooperative of South Africa, and Steen is what they call Chenin Blanc in those parts. There's not much on the nose here--in that respect, it's almost like Pinot Grigio. However, it has a much stronger presence in the mouth. The overwhelming element is firm acidity, with medium tartness and a short finish. No dominant flavors other than the baseline "white wine" taste. The wine on its own isn't that impressive, but it paired quite nicely with dinner: a cup of butternut squash soup and a grilled sandwich containing havarti cheese, thin slices of d'Anjou pears*, and smoked ham.

Not a bad little wine for the beginning of spring.

*A somewhat appropriate pairing, as the Chenin Blanc grapes originally come from around Anjou in France.

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