About This Wine
Brander Vineyard is that most rare of California wineries: a Sauvignon Blanc specialist.
Brander — founded by Fred Brander, a native of Buenos Aires, in 1975 — was one of the first wineries established in the Santa Ynez Valley, a bucolic ranching area north of Santa Barbara. From the very beginning, Brander’s focus has been on American renditions of “White Burgundy.”
Each year, Brander crafts a number of Sauvignon Blanc-based bottlings. There are vineyard-designated wines, there’s a Santa Ynez Valley cuvee made from both estate and purchased grapes, there a bottling named after Brander’s daughter (Natalie), and there’s this wine named after Brander’s son (Nicolas).
It’s the Cuvee Nicolas that most closely mirrors the Bordeaux style, as it’s aged in French oak barrels — half being filled for the first time — to add richness and a silky texture. The 2010 vintage showcases opulent fruit and firm-balanced acidity, making it a perfect pairing partner for lobster with lemon butter.
About Sauvignon Blanc
Notable "grassy" aroma, often with notes of apple and citrus fruits. High acidity. Can amaze as a late harvest wine, with rich and complex flavors.
- Grape Composition:75% Sauvignon Blanc and 25% Semillon
- Grape Source:Estate Vineyards in Santa Barbara’s Santa Ynez Valley
- Aromas & Flavors:White Flowers, Citrus, Vanilla, Apricot Marmalade & Minerals
- Aging Vessels:French Oak Barrels (50% First Use)
- When to Drink:Now Through 2013
- Food Pairing Suggestionroast pork, or lobster with lemon butter.
Smoked Duck A La Orange Just in case this year's California wildfires impart a smoky flavor to vintage 2008 wines, here's a recipe that will match up nicely. Otherwise, try this dish - developed by Garre Winery Executive Chef Ty Turner -- with naturally smoky wines such as Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Pinot Noir or Syrah. Get The Recipe
Papaya Pear Mango Salsa Normally, we provide Vinesse members with complete recipes for wine-friendly fare. This month, however, we thought we'd share a pair of "topping" recipes that will bring any number of main course selections to life. We begin with this salsa recipe from our friends at Sonoma County's Kenwood Vineyards. Try it over sea bass, halibut or salmon for a palate-awakening change of pace, and enjoy it with Sauvignon Blanc, White Bordeaux or almost any white blend. Get The RecipeScallop Stir Fry It recently was reported that President Barack Obama is a big fan of scallops -- those velvety, succulent treats from the sea. But scallops may not be the first thing you think of when you get the urge to take a wok on the wild side. We predict that will change once you've tried this recipe. It makes 4 servings, and matches beautifully with... Get The RecipeCitrus Roasted Chicken With Basil Cream Sauvignon Blanc is among the most flavorful and refreshing wines on Earth. But the characteristics that make it unique -- its relatively high acid level, its "grassy" impression in the nose, its mild herbal flavors in the mouth -- also render it a real challenge to pair with food. But we've found a recipe that works beautifully, primarily because... Get The Recipe
Green Salad With Cranberry Vinaigrette With almost any type of salad, we suggest Sauvignon Blanc as a well-matched wine. But because of the cranberry flavor featured in this recipe, you may want to try a wine that includes cranberry among its aromas and flavors. We tried it with a lighter-bodied Pinot Noir, and it turned out to be an intriguing and enticing combination. Get The Recipe