Wine: Spring in a bottle

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From the May 1, 2014 edition

I’ve been seduced by a bottle again.

And again, it hasn’t backfired.

Simple lines. A spring-y icon. A modern look.

The promise of a bright, crisp white awaits in this edition of “pretty bottles.”

The 2012 Dashwood Sauvignon Blanc ($13 at The Wine Guy in Pickerington) hails from New Zealand, a region that’s been known for the grape since the late ’70s.

Choosing a bottle from a country that’s known for that varietal (chianti from Italy, pinot noir from Washington state, chardonnay from France) isn’t a guaranteed success, but — when in doubt — it’s not a bad move.

In this case, it brought me a fruit-forward white with a bit of body that, at first, had a surprisingly peppery/maybe mustardy flavor. It toned down quite a bit, though, leaving tropical fruit and citrus flavors to shine. No oaky flavors here — just a bright, sharp character that cut through breaded cauliflower with a cheese dipping sauce and paired well with late-afternoon sunshine.

But what doesn’t?

Plus, “sauvignon blanc” might just be the best-sounding varietal to roll off the tongue.

This white grape, originally French and now grown far and wide, is generally considered fresh and fruit-forward-tasting. Depending on the growing environment, sauvignon blanc grapes yield wine that can be anything from herbal to tropically fruity — with the former being more of a classic French style. Pair it with pesto-sauce-heavy pasta, creamy cheeses, risotto or seafood tacos.

Or just some sunshine.

Photo by Meghan Ralston