Alfaro Gruner Veltliner 2020

Santa Cruz Mountains
$30 (Wine Club Reorder Price: $26)

Richard Alfaro and his wife Mary Kay enjoy the fruits of their labor. After a satisfying career as the founders of a restaurant and the wholesale baking company known under their own name, Alfaro’s Micro Bakery, the couple shifted gears in 1997, acquiring an aging 75 acre apple farm south of Santa Cruz in Corralitos, California, which they subsequently transformed into Alfaro Family Vineyards & Winery. There are 56 acres currently under vine.

Grüner Veltliner is a dry white wine that grows almost only in Austria, with just a touch here in California. With flavors of green pepper and lime, Grüner Veltliner is an exotic alternative to Sauvignon Blanc. The name translates to “Green Wine of Veltlin.” Veltlin was an area in the lower Alps during the 1600s that is now part of Valtellina, Italy.

The primary fruit flavors in Grüner Veltliner are typically lime, lemon, and grapefruit. There is also a green and herbaceous flavor that is often described as white pepper. However, what makes Grüner Veltliner wine so unique is its signature vein of acidity that explodes in your mouth like pop rocks.

This wine comes from a single and organically farmed vineyard in the Santa Cruz Mountains aptly named La Playita Vineyard. The California expression of the Austrian grape shows familiar lemon zest and apricot pit with a slight floral note pairing with fresh white pepper. Savory herbs such as tarragon and marjoram sync perfectly with the salty acidity on the finish.

This dry, crisp and zesty white wine is made from the most widely planted grape in Austria. Medium-bodied and pale greenish/straw-colored, it boasts the citrusy flavors of lime and grapefruit, with savory notes of white pepper.

Aged 6 months in neutral oak, 250 cases produced.

Amy Ryan – December 2021

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