A Red for White Wine Drinkers

Living with a white wine drinker, I have a whole collection of red wines I never drink. They’re usually too heavy, dense, or “meaty” as he likes to say. But on a recent date night to New York’s Maialino, I thought I’d make a push for something we might both enjoy, given the chill in the air. I gave sommelier Erik Lombardo my challenge: help us find a light-bodied, acid-driven red that even a white wine drinker could love. He came back with a grape I’d never heard of—Rossesse from Liguria, the thin-strip of land in northwestern Italy that hugs the Ligurian sea and best known for playing host to Genoa, the capital city for pesto-lovers everywhere. Lombardo described the wine as having a briny acidity, and I was immediately intrigued. Continue reading

Beyond Sauvignon Blanc: New Zealand Riesling

When autumn hits, I put away the clean, crisp wines of summer and turn to aromatic riesling, its delicious nectar warming my body and soul against the onset of cold. I’ve explored the unctuous rieslings of Germany and Austria, tasted Eden Valley’s Australian delights, adored Alsace’s bone-dry take. But it was only in the past year or so that I discovered New Zealand’s hidden secret. Continue reading

High-Quality, Affordable Pinot Noir from Chile

During the February harvest season in Chile’s Leyda Valley, a cool-climate winegrowing region located alongside the country’s central coastline, I visited the winery that gave its name to the region.

Viña Leyda was founded in 1998 and has since been focused on developing vineyards in key areas, covering the hillsides that dramatically slope down toward the Maipo river and the sparkling Pacific Ocean in the distance, for grape varieties like pinot noir and sauvignon blanc. Continue reading