Spring is synonymous with flowers, and it turns out it's also a great time to enjoy floral wines.

Spring is synonymous with flowers, and it turns out it's also a great time to enjoy floral wines.

Floral is a description you'll come across often, and it means wines with a floral character, or that smell floral on the nose. Wondering how a grape turns into wine that tastes like a flower?

Grapes have inherent characteristics, and they take on additional characteristics depending on the climate and season in which they're grown. When a winemaker adds yeast during the fermentation process, it reacts with the grape juice and produces a new flavor - like, say, something flowery.

The white grapes highlighted below just happen to produce wines that smell especially flowery and are full of tropical fruity tastes, said Dennis Domini, wine department manager at The Andersons on Brice Road.

And that happens to make them perfect for enjoying on the patio after they've been given a good chill.


Yalumba viognier (2008)

Region: South Australia

Cost: $12

Flavors: Honeysuckle and lemon aromas give way to a crisp and silky sip

Pairs well with: Mild cheeses and plain crackers; a light salad; fruit salad; grilled chicken; or shellfish in a cream sauce

Dennis Domini's advice: "It's a good summer, outside kind of a wine. Enjoy it with something simple. It also stands alone."


Estampa Estate viognier-chardonnay (2008)

Region: Chile

Cost: $10

Flavors: Smells of peaches and wildflowers; drinks rich and soft, with honey and citrusy flavors

Pairs well with: Mild cheeses and plain crackers; a light salad; fruit salad; grilled chicken; or shellfish in a cream sauce

Dennis Domini's advice: "There's a floral note in there, but for the people who don't like overly floral character, you can do something like this."


Ballentine Vineyards chenin blanc (2008)

Region: Napa Valley, California

Cost: $12

Flavors: Bright and softly sweet, with honeysuckle and honeydew flavors

Pairs well with: Mild cheeses and plain crackers; a light salad; fruit salad; grilled chicken; or shellfish in a cream sauce

Dennis Domini's advice: "They have a nice, crisp acidity to them, and that's why they go very well with food."