The wine: Evolution White, Sokol Blosser
Where’s it from? Oregon
Where to buy it: winedirect.co.uk or Whole Foods
What it will set you back: £12
When you’re learning about wine there tends to be a lot of emphasis on the different grape varieties (that’s Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, not green and red!) and what their different flavour profiles are. Single varietal wines – yup, that’s wines based on one type of grape – are quite easy to get your head around and deservedly popular with consumers who appreciate knowing roughly what they can expect even if they haven’t tried a particular bottle or producer before.
Blends – that is, wines made from more than one variety – can have lots of different reasons for being. It can be the winemaker’s way of adding different kinds of flavour: avid readers might remember my review of the D’Arenberg Laughing Magpie Shiraz, which has a bit of the white wine Viognier in it to balance out their bolshy Aussie red.
Loads of champagnes are blends, too, and blending also allows winemaker’s to counter the effects of weather in a particular season or add fruit and acidity characteristics to keep an individual year’s wine output still tasting like “their” champagne.
Evolution takes this one step further. The producer makes both a white and a red from nine different grape varieties, including Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc. I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this but was sort of anticipating a “wine soup” effect with not much dominant flavour going on. It ended up really surprising me by being really crisp, floral and peachy, like a full-on Viognier crossed with the flowery taste you sometimes get from Gewurztraminer. They reveal the nine grapes, but not which ones are particularly prevalent, so if you are a wine dork there is a really hard “guess what’s in this” game to be played. It’s fresh and fruity enough to be a good partner for spicy food, and pretty good value – I’d definitely recommend it if you are looking for something a bit unusual!
Enjoy, and thanks for reading -