SHELBURNE — Like conversation with an old friend, sometimes it’s the wine that completes the flavor of an evening, especially when hunkering down during Vermont’s renowned and frigid winters with warm blankets, bright fires and stocked stoves.
The depth of season often warrants darker, heavier wines to pair with rich, hearty food, but white wines should not be forgotten during this time of year: a chilled, crisp white pairs excellently with cozy, flannel-inspired dishes such as cedar wood roasted salmon, sage butter Cornish hens, or a rich chowder with heavy cream and alliums.
Shelburne Vineyards’ 2019 “Dry Louise Swenson” is one such wine.
An almost-green, aromatic nose peels back into a measured introduction, trailing strands of new honey and a short, crisp end. Cool metal lingers with the citrus on the tongue, leaving the palate refreshed and quenched without leaning on the tartness of grape skins.
The careful layering of the cold-hardy Louise Swenson, LaCrescent and Itasca grapes results in a balanced but bright flavor profile tinged with notes of lemon rind near the back of the palate and clover in the front, and the bright, rounded mouthfeel and mellow citrus notes of this wine make it a sensational pairing for herbed dishes and fresh cheese.
Louise’s bouquet features Meyer lemons, light grass, with a friendly and spring-like texture and zero chewiness, making the wine as easy a sipper during a hot summer afternoon as it is on a snowy January day. This wine is flexible, agreeable and unintimidating, and reminiscent of cool sunsets as the days draw longer — something to have with hors d’oeuvres with friends.
What it pairs with
A perfect way to spruce up dinner or lunch, Dry Louise pairs ideally with spreads featuring fruity oils and intense bites, and bloomy and washed-rind styles of cheese like Vermont Farmstead Cheese Company’s Lille Collumiers or Jasper Hill Cellars’ Willoughby, which boast distinctive mushroomy flavors and a creamy, fatty, soft, cold-earthiness to their profiles.
Where can you get it?
Shelburne Vineyard is located at 6308 Shelburne Road in Shelburne, and currently operates Thursday through Monday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. According to their website, Shelburne Vineyard ships to California, Colorado, Florida, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington D.C.