Wednesday Viognier is the Way #WBW78
June 19, 2012
When I saw that Wine Blogger Wednesday #WBW78 was going the way of Viognier, I knew it was time to dip into the special selection section of the cellar, and hearken back to the hot summer days of 2011 in ol’ VA.
The similar degrees of heat and humidity that we know so well in the north country send weeds and grass skyward, and wilt our resolve to deal with it.
But mow we must.
This Michael Shaps 2008 Viognier, that I had picked up at the winery last year prior to the Wine Bloggers Conference, was the right reward after a tough job, now that summer chores are fully upon us.
Viognier and I have not always been on good terms. I had met it once or twice before I was presented with an inexpensive South African version several years ago, that was so over-the-top floral and overtly ripe, that it set me back. I’m serious…I do not even remember the name of the wine, it shocked me so. It was grotesque. Kafka or Gogol in a glass. Hothouse flowers with cloying perfume and the rot of durian fruit….but somehow retaining enough of Viognier essence, that for a while, any other Viognier would resurrect that vivid and ghastly scene.
Post Aromatic Stress Disorder?
Thankfully with time, I got beyond that assault on my nasal nervous system and scent retrieval wetware. It has taken gentle and repeated exposure to fine renditions of the fruit in order to recover fully. Wines like the well crafted 2008 Shaps have been important stepping stones in my rehabilitation.
Michael Shaps 2008 Viognier
Citrus, honeysuckle, stone fruit, and talc rises right out of the glass
Soft creamy texture with beam of acidity down middle with lean lemon peel citrus, complex and subtle, wide fruit mid-palate. A hint of fresh nectarine, and astringent herbs. 13%ABV is on the edge of showing itself, but does more for the body.
Alluring , juicy, fresh and delicious. ($30)
At this point, I’m in a pretty healthy relationship with Viognier, and am currently fermenting a batch of Chilean juice from the Curico Valley that is destined for another Chardonnay/Viognier blend this year.
I guess it is time to see if I am up to trying South African Viognier again. Any suggestions?