© Copyright 1998 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.
These two Northern California whites are similarly priced, similar in style, and even their names are so similar that they almost rhyme. Fat fruit and oak takes them both somewhat out of the style category that I prefer in Sauvignon Blanc, but the Beringer does it to an extreme that's frankly irritating. If I wanted Chardonnay, I'd buy Chardonnay! But that being said, both wines are well-made and fairly priced, and the Benziger, despite its oak, is at least reasonably typical of the grape.
Benziger 1995 Sonoma County Fumé Blanc ($8.99)
FOOD MATCH: The grassy character makes it exceptional with an asparagus risotto laced with a strong Pecorino Romano cheese.
Beringer 1996 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc ($9.29)
FOOD MATCH: Grilled swordfish, for which purpose the buttery wine worked well; I'd normally have gone with a Chardonnay.
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