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McPherson Viognier 2013

Viognier from Texas
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    Winemaker Notes

    The 2013 Viognier exhibits beautifully focused citrus, apricot, grapefruit and floral notes with balanced acidity. A lovely "anytime wine" but so well suited to Asian cuisine, grilled seafood and chicken, fresh fruit and light cheeses.

    Critical Acclaim

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    McPherson

    McPherson

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    McPherson, Texas
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    The McPhersons have been a pioneering family in grape growing and wine making in Texas for over 40 years. The family patriarch, Dr. Clinton A. "Doc" McPherson, is one of the "Fathers" of the modern Texas wine industry. In 1976 "Doc," a Chemistry Professor at Texas Tech University, and Bob Reed founded Llano Estacado Winery in Lubbock, one of the first post-Prohibition Texas winery. Today "Doc" remains one of the state's prime grape growers and was the first in Texas to plant Sangiovese in his Sagmor Vineyard. Kim's mother, Clara, while a professor in Texas Tech's Department of Food Science, established the university's Hotel Restaurant Management degree program. His younger brother, Jon, has been a winemaker in the Temecula area near San Diego, California, for over twenty years. Kim graduated from Texas Tech with a degree in Food Science and then completed the enology and viticulture program at the University of California at Davis. He worked in Napa Valley before returning to Lubbock as winemaker for Llano Estacado from 1979 until 1985 and for Cap*Rock Winery from 1990 until 2007, where he also made McPherson Cellars. Kim and Jon have produced wines together in California under several labels including Il Fratello and Cucamonga Cellars.

    Maintained by a long history of knowledgeable grape growers and a current generation of persevering winemakers, modern Texas wine production continues to flourish. Today Texas ranks fifth in production volume and boasts a number of variations in climatic conditions and terrain suitable for viticulture.

    The Spanish planted the first vineyards in the state in the 1660s in Ysleta Mission near what is now El Paso. Texas is also home of the famous taxonomist, Thomas Munson, who led extensive research in the 1880s on vine breeding and is credited with saving Europe from complete phylloxera devastation. His results led to the French importation of huge amounts of American species phylloxera-resistant rootstocks, which when grafted onto their non-resistant Vitis vinifera species, prevented the spread of the disease.

    Today Texas boasts over 275 bonded wineries and eight official American Viticultural Areas (AVAs). Some of the main AVAs include Texas High Plains, Texas Hill Country, Bell Mountain, Escondido Valley and Fredericksburg.

    After experimentation with popular California varieties yielded mixed results, many growers have turned their focus to heat and drought-resistant Mediterranean varieties. Grapes such as Syrah, Tempranillo, Sangiovese, Viognier and Vermentino are well-suited to the Texas environment, especially the Texas High Plains AVA in the northwestern Panhandle of Texas where vineyards are planted at 3,000-4,000 feet. This AVA receives of plenty of sunshine and cool nighttime temperatures support acid retention.

    Viognier

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    Full-figured and charmingly floral, Viognier is one of the most important white grapes of the northern Rhône, and the only one allowed in Condrieu and neighboring monopole (an entire appellation dedicated to just one winery), Château Grillet. It is also a blending variety in several appellations throughout the entire Rhône Valley. Viognier is grown throughout much of the rest of the wine world with some degree of success. Look for great New World examples from California, Chile, Oregon, Washington and cooler parts of Australia.

    In the Glass

    This is an aromatic variety making rich, complex and full-bodied white wines redolent of a full bouquet of flowers, stone and tropical fruits and a dash of spice. It is lower in acidity than most white wines, lending to its heavy impression on the palate. While a whiff of Viognier might suggest sweet flavors, these wines are typically quite dry.

    Perfect Pairings

    Viognier is an intense, bold variety that can easily stand up to hearty food like pork loin with apricot stuffing, roasted chicken or chicken Kiev.

    Sommelier Secret

    While Viognier is a white grape, it also plays an important role in the red wines of Côte Rôtie in the northern Rhône. About 5% Viognier is typically co-fermented with the Syrah in order to stabilize the color, and as an added benefit, add a subtle perfume.

    RPT20279397_2013 Item# 134851