Tariquet Classic White 2015: Summer & seafood
When the French produce a white wine using grape varietals we aren’t familiar with, the taste experience can be quite a surprise. Not that this is a bad thing; it’s even fun. But there are some that simply “baffle the panel” every time.
Among these are white wines from France’s Gascogne (aka Gascony) region. While many are quite light on the palate, they still exude incredible bouquets with both fruit and earthiness. All told, this is the formula for exquisitely thirst-quenching summer wines.
Take the “Classic” from Domaine du Tariquet. They sell this wine for around $10 (mostly via online stores) but it still has much of the charm that many of the $20-$30 French white wines have. The call it “fruits de mer” and it shows through pleasantly.
However, one of the mysteries of this wine is how it contains only 10.5% alcohol and yet exhibits only minute traces of sugar with an acidity level that’s so under control. Maybe it’s the cold weather on the west coast of France or the grape varietals (Ugni Blanc, Colombard, Sauvignon Blanc, & Gros Manseng) used in the blend. Whatever is at work here, this is the perfect luncheon wine with a seafood salad!
It has a bouquet that starts out with peach and a little oak then adds a scent of grapefruit a few minutes after serving. In the mouth, it continues with a nice combo of tropical fruit and grapefruit. With a briny acidity that is characteristic of the region and a light body, this is a summer quaffer for sure.
So as the heat goes on and the menu demands something light, a Gascogne white may be an excellent choice. And if there is a multi-course meal in the works, pick one of your favorite domestic Sauvignon Blancs as a follow-up.
From another angle, when you have to escape that furnace out there in whatever way possible. Low alcohol wines like Tariquet are one of the better ideas right now.
Because the bouquet of this wine comes forward just fine with moderate chill, serve it from the fridge after about 45 minutes (50-55 degrees).