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Pick of the Week: Thirsty Owl Vidal Blanc 2010

April 2012
Originally published in the Finger Lakes Times as part of my internship with the NY Wine and Culinary Center

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Why it’s worth trying: The 2010 Vidal Blanc from Thirsty Owl Wine Co. is the perfect wine for the warmer weather and is often referred to as the “kissing cousin” of riesling since it shares many of the same qualities. It is delicious enjoyed on its own while relaxing in the sun, but is complex enough to stand up to a flavorful meal. As the recipient of seven awards — including the prestigious Golden Nose award — you really can’t go wrong with this wine.

Pale gold in color, this semi-dry white wine features aromas of Granny Smith apples and juicy pears. On the palate, there is a burst of delicately sweet nectarine, with a slight minerality at the finish.

Thirsty Owl Wine Co., in Ovid on the west side of Cayuga Lake, is one of Cayuga Lake’s newest wineries. Since opening in 2002, the winery has proven itself as a producer of high-quality wines and has received countless awards and medals.

Price: $14.99

Serving tips: Vidal Blanc can be served either chilled (about 45 degrees), but not cold, or at cellar temperature (about 57 degrees) for greater depth of flavor.

Food pairing: This is a truly versatile wine that pairs quite well with a variety of dishes. Try it with lighter meals such as chicken or pork, or pasta with a white sauce. The bright crispness of this wine also allows it to pair nicely with a spicy meal such as curried chicken or Thai food, as it will refresh the palate and not overwhelm the dish’s flavors.

You might also want to try: Similar wines include a 2008 Vidal Blanc from Atwater Estate Winery in Hector or a 2008 Riesling from Prejean Winery in Penn Yan.

Where to buy it: Thirsty Owl Wine Co. in Ovid or the New York Wine and Culinary Center tasting room.