Sparkling Wine and White Wine Recommendations

Although I am not a techie and still shop at Spec’s, where I have bought about a jillion dollars worth of wine since 1973, and have recently shopped at Total Wine, I must tell you about a new and convenient wine source: Vivino.

In this not-so-normal condition we now face as a society, online wine sales have sky-rocketed. For many, buying wine is often based on guesswork and label art. Without the help of the experts at the wine retailers or restaurants, or from your favorite wine columnist, buying wine online may feel intimidating. I have found that Vivino truly demystifies wine and has figured out a way to help oenophiles know if they are going to like a wine.  Vivino is the world’s most downloaded wine app with 47 million users and 12.8 million wines in their database.

If you are on the Vivino app, a scan of the label reveals the wine’s flavor profile, grapes and region, and the app also displays the community score, reviews and characteristics, in addition to allowing the users to review and rate the wine. Users can even buy the wine right from the app or online from Vivino’s marketplace of partnered wine retailers. Searches can be made by region, grape and even food pairings. I highly recommend this informative and accessible resource.

For those of you ready to launch into spring with some sparkling and white wines, below are some of my picks for the season.

JCuvée Brut Russian River Valley Non-Vintage
Absolutely delicious with honey goat cheese and Blue Diamond Almonds Artisan Flax Seed Nut Thins. Price: $30

Argyle Blanc de Noirs Willamette Valley 2016 Perfect with truffle mousse on toast points.  Almost unrivaled in its price range of $33.

SOSIE Sparkling Red Wine Vivio Vineyard Bennett Valley Sonoma County Non-Vintage
From heavy hors d’oeuvres to beef bolognaise, my first sparkling Syrah.  Acquired taste?  Price:  $34

Piper Heidsieck Cuvée Brut Champagne Non-Vintage
Perfect with smoked wild salmon with crème fraiche, capers and a squeeze of fresh lemon on little toasts. Price:  $43

Quinta do Crasto Branco Douro (Portugal) 2017
Price: $12

Carmel Road Chardonnay Monterey County “Sustainable” 2018
Great bargain at $12.

Mulderbosche Chenin Blanc  STEEN OP HAUT  (South Africa) 2019 D
elicious and refreshing. Price:  $15

Rodney Strong Estate Chardonnay Chalk Hill 2018 Winner in the price range of $22.

Z.D. Sauvignon Blanc  Napa Valley 2019
From 100% organically certified grapes, a beautiful balance of lovely fruit flavors and acidity. Price:  $26

SOSIE White Blend Sonoma Valley Rossi Ranch 2019
Successful blend of Roussanne, Grenache Blanc and Marsanne. Price: $34

Cuvaison En Cigare Sauvignon Blanc Napa Valley Los Carneros 2019
Try with fried shrimp with your favorite dipping sauce. Price: $38

Chappellet Grower Collection El Novillero Chardonnay Carneros 2018
In an unusual match, I loved it with chicken fried steak with cream gravy!
It was a hot day.  I wanted a chilled white. Price: $46

Far Niente Chardonnay Napa Valley 2018
Gil Nickel set out to make a Corton-Charlemagne look-alike and succeeded. Price:  $60

Cheers to the new season!