Saturday, March 02, 2019

Last night's tipple: 3.

Last night Vinomaker and I went out to celebrate his birthday, finally.  We had originally planned to go out to eat last Friday, but Vinomaker was feeling a bit poorly and we ended up having to cancel our plans.  After rescheduling, yesterday evening we headed off to Gran Eléctrica in downtown Napa.
Always on the lookout for something curious in the vino-department, a particular white wine on the restaurant's wine list caught my eye.  The Ruth Lewandowski, 2017 'Naomi' Gibson Ranch Grenache Gris seemed to fit my curious-criterion, so I went ahead and ordered it.  Our server brought out the bottle and proceeded to give a little speech.  "I think this is my favourite wine on our list.  It's made by a gay Mormon with fruit he buys from California and makes into wine in Utah.  The winemaker wanted to be a ski-bum instead, however, he decided to start a winery."  Thanks for the editorial, I think, but I usually prefer it when a server just gets wine into my glass.  Some people love to assign labels: I just love to be assigned a glass for my wine.
As I sipped the wine, it dawned on me that the vintner and proprietor of Ruth Lewandowski Wines, Evan Lewandowski, is most likely not a practising Mormon.  Unfined and unfiltered, the slightly cloudy, almost colourless Naomi was a truly eye-opening wine: it takes a gifted winemaker who is a wine-drinker to make a wine as interesting as this - I'm just saying.  Made from the grey clone of Grenache (similar concept to my Pinot grigio/gris vines), Lewandowski does indeed source his grapes from a vineyard in the McDowell Valley AVA, up north from Vinoland in Mendocino County.  The fermentation process is started in California, but then the partially fermented juice is trucked to Mr.  Lewandowski's Salt Lake City warehouse-winery.
Peachy, citrusy, floral, with a crazy vanilla-pineappley-vibe and diaphanous-salinity, my initial reaction to the lofty acidity was that it could possibly render the Naomi undrinkable.  But no, everything just magically slipped into focus on my palate.  (And it paired wonderfully with Gran Eléctrica's upscale Mexican cuisine, though the food wasn't nearly as exciting as the wine.)
A lovely wine with an entertaining story, a nice little find.


New Hampshire Wineman said...

VG: Interesting.
Since my grandmother's name is Naomi, I'd HAVE to buy this wine, provided I saw it.
Glad your man is on the mend!
Upon googling 'diaphanous-salinity', your post is the worlds only reference.

Thud said...

Gay Mormon, surely not.

Vinogirl said...

NHW: “World’s only reference. “. I should think so. (I have a way with words.). Titter, titter.

Thud: Yup. Variety, or in this case varietal, is the spice of life.