Breaking Out of the Wine Rut – White Wine Edition, Part 1

Rut – a habit or pattern of behavior that has become dull or unproductive but is hard to change.

Do you ever find yourself stuck in a rut? As humans we are creatures of habit. Habits such as teeth brushing, bed making, and exercise aid in discipline and self-care. But sometimes habits can become ruts, leaving us feeling unfulfilled. For example, drinking the same wine over and over can become a rut. Thankfully, the world of wine is vast, making it easy to get out of a rut.

I have been guilty of wine ruts. It is easy to pick up a bottle of wine at the super market while shopping for groceries. I find the bottle I like that goes with most everything and it is value priced. It becomes my “go-to” wine and all other opportunities slowly drift away. I may try another wine from time to time but inevitably I return to my “go-to” wine, I don’t even have to think about it. Does any of this sound familiar?

The good news is wine ruts can be easily overcome. Nielson reports online wine sales are rising. This means more wine consumers are moving out of wine ruts and into exploring wines from around the globe. This makes me very happy. However, too many of you still buy the same wine again and again from your local super market – home of the wine rut because their wine inventory is limited and rarely rotates.

Getting out of a wine rut is easy. I have already suggested one way – engage in online wine shopping. There are many online wine retailers with excellent inventories, many offer discounted or free shipping. Wineries also ship direct to consumers at discounted rates. If the price of shipping is an issue, gather some of your fellow wine rut friends and place an order together. This allows fun exploration with shared shipping costs.

Another way to get out of a wine rut is to purchase wine from a local wine retailer (preferably not a box store). Local retailers can guide you to new wines to try based on your “go-to” wine likes. Furthermore, they tend to rotate their inventory frequently, often times selling smaller or boutique wineries that super markets do not carry.

A final way to get out of a wine rut is to read quality blogs and wine publications. Look for recommendations of wines that fit your tastes and budget then head to your local wine retailer and request the wine, or Google it to locate and purchase.

This is part two, of a three part series with recommendations of wines to get you out of a wine rut. Sometimes getting out of a wine rut means trying new varietals, other times in means trying new regions or even new producers. Let’s break out of the wine rut with some delicious white wines.

Spain is an excellent source for breaking out of a wine rut. With many diverse regions and grapes, you are sure to find many new wines to enjoy.

Disclaimer: media samples; thoughts & opinions my own.

2017 Beronia Verdejo Rueda Spain ($8): I had the pleasure of visiting this region last spring, and having lunch with Beronia winemaker Matias Calleja last month. If you like Sauvignon Blanc, you will enjoy Verdejo. Crisp and refreshing notes of white flowers, citrus, stone fruit, dried herbs, and a touch of bitter almond; the crispness follows through on the palate, high acidity, easy to enjoy. Visit wine-searcher to locate.

2015 Bodegas Godelia Godello-Dona Blanco Bierzo Spain ($17): 80% Godello, 20% Dona Blanca; this is a mineral driven wine that begs to be paired with food; notes of citrus, acacia, and under-ripe stone fruit are wrapped in a blanket of minerality; medium-bodied with a slightly creamy texture, refreshing and elegant. Visit wine-searcher to locate.

Did you know Texas and Arizona produce high quality wines? If this is news to you, you are in for a treat. These two wines will need to be ordered direct from the winery but will definitely pull you out of your wine rut.

2016 Aridus Wine Company Malvasia Bianca Wilcox Arizona USA ($36): Inviting aromas of fresh picked citrus, white floral notes, exotic spice notes of cardamom, ginger, and Chinese 5 spice, orchard and stone fruit, orange blossom; this dry wine is elegant, and has medium+ acidity, making it highly approachable and food friendly; you will love this wine. Visit Aridus Wine Company to purchase.

2016 Bending Branch Winery Comfortage Texas Hill Country USA ($28): 100% Roussanne; notes of ripe apple, pear, nectarine, apricot, mango, under-ripe pineapple, white flowers, baking spice; rich and round on the palate, medium acidity, elegant and great paired with linguine and clams. Visit Bending Branch Winery to purchase.

California may already be your go-to wine region; however, these wines are guaranteed to pull you out of your typical California wine rut.

2016 Priest Ranch Grenache Blanc Napa Valley USA ($22): 100% Grenache Blanc; highly aromatic with notes of fresh picked white flowers, Korean melon, honey suckle, nectarines, citrus, and under-ripe tropical fruit; it is lively on the palate, crisp acidity, highly refreshing; Grenache Blanc is a favorite of mine, I recommend you try it to get out of your wine rut. Visit Priest Ranch to purchase.

2016 Scheid Vineyards Albariño Monterey Country USA ($26): 100% Albariño; this is another grape you should definitely be drinking; crisp aromas of citrus, tropical fruit, slightly under-ripe stone fruit, white floral notes, and stale beer dazzle; on the palate it is light, crisp, highly refreshing, almost gulpable; you will want more than one bottle – possibly your new summer favorite. Visit Scheid Vineyards to purchase.

2016 Murrieta’s Well The Whip Livermore Valley USA ($26): We will end with another gulpable wine; one sip and you will thank me for the introduction; this wine is a field blend of some of the world’s most aromatic grapes – 33% Sauvignon Blanc, 24% Semillon, 21% Chardonnay, 12% Orange Muscat, 10% Viognier; it erupts with aromas of acacia, orange blossom and jasmine, then runs the fruit gambit from citrus, stone fruit, tropical fruit, and orchard fruit – think Chiquita Banana woman’s hat; on the palate it is lively, layers of flavors, high acidity, crisp and refreshing with a long finish. A true dazzler. Visit Murrieta’s Well to purchase.

I hope some of these white wines temp you to get out of your white wine rut. Stay tuned, I will have eight more temping white wines to share on Friday. Cheers.

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