I decided to try a Visual Tasting of a white wine tonight just to see what it looks like. Which white to taste wasn’t a difficult decision either: Alamosa 2010 Tio Pancho Ranch Viognier. To date this is still my favorite Viognier- one that I can pour, sit, sip, and savor. Most other viogniers that I have tasted scream to be paired with food, but Jim Johnson’s very-lightly-oaked-wine stands perfectly well alone and on its own merit.
The Viognier starts with a “fresh” pastel-yellow to orange that I can only describe as lemon “pith” on top of Tangerine with a distinctive under tone of lime “zest”. If you have ever sucked on the outside of a lime and tasted the bitter oils that are stored in the rind, you may get the “picture”. Please pardon the pun. The flavor of the wine initially reinforces the nose, but quickly reveals a creamy almost buttery overtone and a set of lower, darker colors, vague smoke and leather that produces a “bite” with the acids. These colors intertwine in my mouth as though they are playfully competing for my attention.
I found the finish to be similarly playful as the darker tones were initially the strongest, but they quickly gave the floor to an unsweetened (wait for it. . .) Tangerine Dream. Okay, maybe not *exactly* tangerine, but a very pastel, cream, yellow-orange.
Please pardon my complete disregard for using consistent metaphors: I majored in Music and can easily relate a good wine to a symphony as I do to colors.