Sunday, 12 May 2013

Vavasour Pinot Gris with Zucchini Soup

As we move into the winter months Down Under (yes, mate, Australia is where I am writing this from!), my wife, DAZ in the Kitchen, and I enjoy making more soups for dinner.  We try a variety of soup recipes and have had some spectacular soups from Sibel Hodge's A Gluten Free Soup Opera which provides gluten-free soup recipes which are easy to make, flavorful and healthy.  Sibel's soup recipes are powerful and flavorful with chick peas, lentils and a lot of different spices.

We also like to make creamy vegetable soups such as pumpkin, broccoli, cauliflower and others.  Recently, we were the benefactors of a 2.5 Kg zucchini and had to figure out what to do with it!  We made a lot of zucchini bread muffins (see recipe in last DAZ in the Kitchen post) and a lot of zucchini soup (recipe has not yet, but will be, published soon in DAZ in the Kitchen).  In fact, we had so much zucchini soup, we ended up freezing several servings.  And tonight we are taking two servings out of the freezer for dinner.

I have tried Riesling with creamy vegetable soups and I have also tried Verdelho.  Both work.  However, many Verdelhos are too soft and tepid and many Rieslings are too acidic.  I have found for my taste, I like a Pinot Gris with a creamy vegetable soup (other than tomato).  A young Pinot Gris still has a bit of acid and slight metallic diesel and mild citrus edge to match up well with the vegetables, but also a soft mouth feel to go with the creaminess.  The 2010 Vavasour Pinot Gris is such a wine.

This is a great wine for the money.  We paid $15 per bottle for this.  It is a New Zealand Pinot Gris from the Marlborough region.  It has pear, apple and grapefruit flavors.  The wine is surprisingly well balanced and integrated for such a young wine.  I love the mouth feel and tannins that provide a puckering on the inside of my cheeks.  I would call it off-dry or juicy dry.

This wine is great value for the money and it goes beautifully with creamy vegetables soups.  It has consistently been rate 93/100 or 94/100.  This wine will not cellar for more than a couple of years.  It is drinkable immediately and drinking very well now.  The 2011 is also rated very high and much more available than the 2010.

Some of the Italian Pinot Gris I have tried are a bit more elegant, but also much more expensive.  They go well with a variety of food choices.  But if you are making a simple creamy vegetable soup and possibly having a bread roll to go with it, a New Zealand Pinot Gris like the 2010 Vavasour will do the trick nicely.

Steve Shipley
Twitter: @shipleyaust
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