Tuesday, March 17, 2009

2008 Double-Take

It’s the time of year when I start seeing bottles in my local wine store that already have the 2008 vintage right there on the label. My brain always requests a double take from my eyes when I see it, because it just seems too early in the year for that. After all, weren’t we just harvesting 2008 vintage grapes back in October? How can there be wine in the bottle already? Didn't E.F. Hutton say "We will sell no wine before its time?" Sorry. Not E.F. Hutton, it was W.C. Fields who said that.

So how can grapes picked just a few months ago already be all dressed up and ready to make their debut?

First, remember that in the southern hemisphere; places like Chile, Argentina, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand … vintners harvest their grapes about 6 months before we do in the northern half of the globe. So 2008s aren’t all that rare from the southern hemisphere by now ... even a few red wines are starting to hit the shelves.

From North America and Europe, it’s time to start seeking out the 2008 rosés and aromatic white wines like Viognier, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio- while we wait a few more months for the earliest release reds to be ready for market.

These aromatic white and rosé wines are best enjoyed when their flavors are young, fresh and vibrant... just as they are right now. So grab some of these early-drinking 2008 vintage wines now, fire up the grill, and start getting ready for those warm spring and summer nights on the patio.

1 comment:

  1. I've made a note of your 2008 recommendations and will be certain to begin experimenting with these young wines. Thank you to the Cork Dorks for making wine experimentation fun rather than intimidating.