Wine-Searcher shared an article a few years ago detailing that if we don’t alter the way we are living to be more environmentally friendly, the go-to varieties throughout the world will have to be warm-weather grapes. This will include areas that have historically been able to grow cooler climate options.
It is a sad reality, especially in our country where we were heading in the right direction with regulations and restrictions that have now been reduced by the latest Supreme Court ruling.
On a brighter note, many of these warm-weather varieties are simply stunning. Often with higher alcohol, these grapes produce luscious wines with texture and concentration, layering ripe fruit notes that can bring a punch of alcohol.
Keeping this alcohol balanced with acidity is the true test of a great winemaker, harnessing the ability to display ripe fruit notes along with incredible freshness.
Neal Family Vineyards is doing this seemingly effortlessly with the latest release of its Napa Valley Vermentino ($38) from the dusty Rutherford AVA. Vibrant and juicy, the wine opens with layers of lemon curd, marzipan, golden peach, and apple, with hints of spiced pear and a touch of soft herbs. A delicious summer wine perfect to pair with lighter seafood or poultry dishes, or even roasted pork tenderloin, creamy cheesy pasta or rice dishes.