Sometimes I like knowing exactly how my glass of wine will taste. It’s comforting to decide what kind of wine fits my current mood, select a beloved bottle, and relish in its familiar scents and flavors. Perhaps that’s why I never have my favorite wines stocked at home; the second I buy them, I drink them.
There are other times, though, when a wine completely puzzles me from the get-go, smacking me in the face with unexpected aromas to ignite a new thirst for discovery. Every sip is exciting because I can’t quite wrap my head around what I’m tasting, regardless of how many times I return to the glass.
That was certainly the case with the Anne Amie Vineyards “Prismé” Pinot Noir Blanc, which turned a casual tasting into a real sensory exploration — one that I still haven’t quite concluded.
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From the Yamhill-Carlton AVA within the Willamette Valley, known for its ancient marine sedimentary soil that creates wines with lush fruit, this white Pinot Noir is a blend of grapes from top sites, pressed immediately from their skins. A technique typically used for red grapes in Champagne, this creates a wine with very little or no color from the grape skins, hence why a red grape can produce a white wine. However, an argument could easily be made that this oak-aged wine is actually a pale, directly pressed rosé, as it has a light, salmon-tinged hue. Depending on the occasion, it could qualify as either color.
Upon first sniff, the Anne Amie “Prismé” Pinot Noir Blanc is extremely enticing, blending tart, sweet, and savory aromas. Orange Julius-like notes of peach skin and fruit mix with tangy tangerine, raw almond, and Greek yogurt, with a bit of rustic earth as well. The palate is round and medium-bodied, but with a fine line of acidity that draws the drinker through to a rich, waxy finish. While it’s tempting to sit and dissect this wine over lengths of time, it would be even more intriguing to explore it with different dishes, such as mushroom risotto or salt-crusted cod. Some wines just take us on a dizzying, mind-twisting journey — and we love them all the more for that.