Tag Archives: Byerly’s

Wolfberger Pinot Blanc

Cost: Average price $16.99

Where buy now: Byerly’s Ridgedale, Sale: Buy one, Get one 1/2 price = $8.50/bottle

Grapes: Pinot Blanc

Region: Alsace, France

Vintage: 2010

Wolfberger Pinot Blanc

You must try this wine!” says my trusted Byerly’s “@winestud”, Rodney, during a recent visit. Really? It’s Alsatian white wine, big deal. Perhaps it was my mood, but I’d never had a wine from the NE region of France that’d ever tripped my trigger. No, he insisted, and tucked it in my wine tote.

Flash forward a few days later. I was perusing my wine rack, gazing at all the bottles (that seem to keep dwindling) and saw this. OK, yeah: Rodney’s pick.

Well, I’ve found my new fried chicken wine. I know, classy. But, truly, this is it. Hey, I can eat with the fanciest of the fancy, but fried chicken has a special place in my heart. The crispy, seasoned coating, the juicy thigh and leg, the grease glistening on your finger tips. It’s all working and on so many levels. [You may recall my poetic waxing last Spring: http://thesavvylush.com/white-wine-of-the-week-|-white-wine-reviews/twin-islands-sauvignon-blanc.html/The Savvy Lush

You’ll need a wine to cut through all that: enhance the flavors, yet balance them out. Oh, Alsatian Pinot Blanc, I sing your praises.

This wine is more than meets the eye. Upon first glance, this is a pale yellow libation with scents of citrus. Try swirling the wine around in the glass with your hand on top. Remove your hand and stick your nose in, you’ll discover different notes popping out at you. I smelled lemon pith, peach and citrus fruits. I smelled again and then caught a very small, sweet undertone, which reminded me of a macaroon.

This wine has a medium body and the acidic tastes of the citrus fruit are rounded out by a slight peach flavor and a light macaroon/vanilla whisper. It was crisp, light yet tart and savory. I thoroughly enjoyed sipping this whilst getting all carnivorous with my fried chicken treat.

Fried chicken not your bag? I [probably] won’t accuse you of being Communist, so here’s another food pairing idea: with a tried and true grilled cheese. Try using Muenster-it’s creamy and melty. I like to slather some Dijon mustard on one side before grilling.

Domaine d’Arton Les Hauts d’Arton Blanc

Cost: Average price $11.99

Where buy now: Solo Vino, Byerly’s Ridgedale, Zipp’s Liquors, Pairings Food & Wine Market

Grapes: 70% Colombard, 20% Sauvignon Blanc, 10% Gros Manseng

Region: Gascony, France

Vintage: 2011

Domaine d’Arton Patrick de Montal Les Hauts d’Arton Blanc

One Arton deserves another [see the Red of the Week Review]. This week’s white is Arton Rosé’s cousin, Les Hauts d’Arton. Don’t get tripped up on the French language. Just channel your inner Steve Martin (“jeh swee, day du du pah”- see his classic “Wild and Crazy Guy” record for more guidance).

This is a dry white wine that tickled my fancy parts right prompt. This light yellow vino has a tinge of green to it’s hue. It is light, clean, crisp with balanced acidity. The tastes are of citrus-think soft lemon and grapefruit. It’s not so citric that your mouth puckers, but rather it has a fresh and floral taste that rounds out beautifully, can be sipped alone or alongside your favorite appetizer. Man, I just love when I open a bottle of wine and sweet aromas come pouring out; I am instantly transported elsewhere. Yet another reason why I so fell in love with this wine.

On a recent day off, I sipped it alongside a baguette stuffed with prosciutto, mozzarella and sweet tomato marmalade. Voulez-vous coucher avec moi ce soir? My moaning and groaning aside, I will state for the record that you must rush out to try this wine. I saved enough to have later alongside a salad where I threw in tuna fish, olives, capers, tomatoes, vidalia onion along with oregano, basil, garlic, balsamic vinegar and olive oil. A gluten-free, meat-free, dairy-free, delicious meal that could please 95% of the population.

This is patio wine at it’s best. Hell, it’s under $9 during Solo Vino’s wine sale right now. As you stock up on white wines for Summer, I see this as a staple. I enjoyed it on my patio, now go and enjoy it on yours!

Domaine d’Arton Patrick de Montal Les Hauts d’Arton Blanc-Patio Living

Fritz Russian River Valley Chardonnay

Cost: Average price $23.99

Where buy now: Byerly’s Ridgedale

Grapes: 100% Chardonnay

Region: Russian River Valley in Sonoma, California

Vintage: 2007

Fritz Chardonnay

The Fritz Chardonnay

Golden glowing in my glass

Lemony smooth love

This wine is so delightful that it made me write a haiku. Remember writing haikus in school? I loved it. What a great exercise to tell a story within a concise 5/7/5 phrasing. I believe the haiku once was the Japanese equivalent to Twitter.

I could wax on and on about this but instead, let me introduce you to one of my favorite wines. First, a disclosure: I’m not a huge Chardonnay drinker. Perhaps this is why I hold this special wine so near and dear to my heart. Second, I don’t know ONE person who doesn’t love this wine. I’d even go so far as to say that this wine was the impetus to start this whole Savvy Lush endeavor!

Flashback almost three years ago, I was perusing the St. Anthony Village Municipal’s (aka “The Muni” or “SAV”) aisles when I saw wine sale signs proclaiming, “Only store in Minnesota who has this wine!”. (Insert car tire screech sound effect.) Hmmmm… $14. Go out of my $10 comfort zone, and for what? A bottle of *gasp* Chardonnay? Hey, you gots to roll the dice sometimes, folks.

That night will forever go down in history as “The evening I fell in love with Fritz”.

What did I fall in love with? This is a superlatively balanced Chardonnay: not too citric, not too oaky, not too buttery, but a solid bit of all three! Aromas of lemon zest, hints of guava, and the a minor touch of vanilla keeps this wine smooth and supple whilst magic carpeting your ass to Happy. Where is “Happy”? I don’t know, but when you’re already floating on a magic carpet, and you’ve got Fritz in tow, it’s always around the bend. Oh, and it never hurts to throw Javier Bardem in there somewhere.

I rushed out the next day, bought another couple bottles, and took one to a dinner party that night. My friends loved it so much, the host called a week later asking about it. Not long after, I bought another bottle and took it to yet another dinner party. They fell similarly smitten, and called up the next day to ask where I purchased it. In fact, they loved it so much, they bought a whole damn case of it! The REAL coup de tat was with crab legs on my b-day. I have trouble discussing that experience without fits of nostalgic tears. Salty, buttery tears.

And so, this love affair continued for a few months, until one day, The SAV Muni sold out of it. I found out from the friends who bought a case, and who wisely bought the remaining bottles. Even though they brought us a bottle, it seemed like the end of an era. (BTW, that bottle sat in the fridge gathering ogling glances for almost two years! That is the longest a bottle has sat in my house.)

A wine this good surely would show up at some other fine spirit peddling establishment, right? But alas, I could never find it. Finally,curiosity and pure longing prompted me to contact the winery. They sent me to the distributor. The distributor told me about a couple restaurants that _may_ be serving it. Ugh, no. This is not working for me. So, I turned to the social media airwaves, calling upon the [cyber] Wine Gods for anyone local to please, please stock the Fritz Chardonnay! My pleading call to action was answered by Byerly’s in both Ridgedale and Eagan.

Three years later this wine runs for $23.99, but it is sooooo worth it. I’ve gathered that there’s going to be a slight shortage of premium California wines from this vintage. Rodney from Byerly’s Ridgedale made me privy to this article: http://www.winespectator.com/webfeature/show/id/46591/Wine Spectator

The evil trifecta of lackluster crops, depleted vines and increased consumption will likely result in increased prices. In the meantime, Byerly’s Ridgedale stocked up so there is Fritz Chardonnay for everyone to enjoy! Pick up a couple bottles. Enjoy one now and save one. Head down to Sea Salt Eatery in Minnehaha Falls Park with a bottle in tow. For a mere $5 corkage fee, sip it alongside some fish tacos and a crab cake sammie, or perhaps some salmon (the other pink meat).

Happy carpet riding, indeed.