The Verde Valley Wine Consortium has been working hard on our AVA (American Viticulture Area) paperwork. The new AVA will include business operations within the Verde Valley and when approved will become the 3rd AVA in Arizona. The two other AVA’s in Arizona are Sonoita and Wilcox.
The Verde Valley Wine Consortium had its first meeting in June of 2008 and published its articles of incorporation on January 7, 2011. They have been diligently working to remove antiquated laws off of our State books. As they move forward in procuring our AVA, the by-laws have been updated to be more specific as to what is referred to as Verde Valley Wine. They have been working with the Cottonwood Chamber of Commerce in developing our Verde Valley Wine Trail site. We have so many wonderful vineyards and remote tasting rooms along our Verde Valley Wine Trail, which we hope visitors will visit when in Sedona and the Verde Valley.
Sedona Wine and Beer Tours by Sedona Delivers, LLC is pleased to be a member of the Verde Valley Wine Consortium.
As I continue to explore the Loire Valley region in France, I thought I’d try another Vouvray or Chenin Blanc. Vouvray comes from the Touraine area of the Loire Valley, North of the Loire River. Chenin Blanc is an extremely versatile wine which can be made from dry to sweet and sparkling. I chose the Maison Alphonse Chotard, 2016 Vouvray. This AOC wine (the highest category of the French rating system) was purchased at Trader Joes and had 11.5%.
The color was a clear lemon, pale straw.
The aroma was clean with no off odors and was fruity with notes of honeysuckle.
The palate was off dry to medium in sweetness, with low acidity and had a medium body. It presented fruity notes with honeysuckle, apricots, citrus and honey.
It finished at around 26 seconds, a little shorter than other Vouvray’s I’ve tried.
Pairing and Comments
It paired easily with a sweetened, marinated Tuna Steak I created. The pairing took down a little of the sweetness of the wine. It was easy drinking, but I prefer a dryer Chenin overall. But for $8, it’s a pleasant wine.
If you like spicy Middle Eastern Food, finding a good wine to pair with it is not always easy. Last night I created a middle eastern chicken dish with a specialized blend of cumin, turmeric, cardamom and many more spices. I choose the Perelada Brut Reserva Cava to go with it. This Spanish, sparkling white brut was made with 45% Xarel-lo, 30% Macabeo, and 25% Parellada, was 11.5% alcohol by volume and aged for a minimum of 15 months.
The color was a pale gold. The nose had lovely aromas of lime and other citrus aromas. The palate also had some lime, stone fruit, peach and mandarin and was acidic when drunk on its own. However, when paired with the food it was smoother and was an excellent choice for the dish. This non-vintage, dry Brut had lovely small bubbles which lasted throughout dinner, and the finish came in at around 22 seconds. At around $15 it’s definitely worth it.
My daughter made an amazing Chinese Dim Sum dinner last night and we decided to pair it with a sparkling Rose’; the Schloss Bierbrich, Rose’ Sekt from Germany. The Germans really love sparkling wine and are the largest consumers of it in Europe, though they are only the third largest producer of sparkling wines globally.
The designation Sekt Troken in a sparkling wine is different than in a still wine. In a sparkling wine it’s not dry but more of an off dry. The wine’s nose had earthy, mineralistic notes to it and the palate showcased notes of honey, honeysuckle, and pear with a smooth mouth feel. This non-vintage, sparkling wine is a combination of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir (known as Spatburgunder in Germany) and had 11% alcohol. The finish came in at around 30 seconds and the wine retained lovely bubbles during our dinner.
It was interesting to note how the palate was semi-sweet when drunk by itself, but when paired with our salty and spicy Dim Sum it appeared to drink quite dry. It’s a great buy at Trader Joes for under $10.
Sue Schurgin is the manager of Sedona Wine and Beer Tours. She is studying for her CSW and sommelier certifications.