2015 Bella Grace Vineyards Grenache Blanc Amador County

“As if pears had been soaked in bay leaf...”

2015 Bella Grace Vineyards Grenache Blanc Amador County

This estate-grown Grenache Blanc was fermented in stainless steel and released within four months of harvest. The color is an improbably pale yellow, like spring sunlight on water. The fragrance is correct for Grenache Blanc, but faint, with muted suggestions of Asian pear, quince, white flowers, and bay laurel. The body is seamless with its aromatic profile, with pome fruits and herbs, as if pears had been soaked in bay leaf. A touch of banana oil slides in at the finish, adding flesh.

What the wine lacks is a cloying soapiness that plagues some California Grenache Blanc. The grape tends toward high sugars, rich fruit notes, and an adequate acid profile for varietal bottling. But I’ve tasted many examples that were low-cut and slippery, leading me to wonder whether the acidity might have fallen through the floor just before harvest, resulting in a wine lacking the crisp edges necessary to balance this grape’s fulsome flavor profile.

But back to the Bella Grace: This is the opposite of that style, a varietal wine with linearity and focus, incredibly light-textured, reticent and lilting.

13.2% abv | $25 (sample)

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