A few weeks back I recommended the Villa Bellezza winery as a weekend escape. Part of the appeal was that their new vintages and offerings this season that we had yet to taste. We’ve sampled the full extent of the wineries offerings, so these new releases always catch our attention. Though we’re not huge white wine drinkers (a revelation that should surprise no one given that the wine list is slanted significantly more towards the reds), there were two new white wines that were award winners and, therefore, must tries. The big winner of the summer, Riva 2018!
My previous white wine, Villa Bellezza favorite was the 2016 Tavola white, which was a little bit like drinking a fermented version of Welch’s white grape juice. It was, and still is, delicious, though a bit sweet and, therefore, not as much to Josh’s taste. In fact, it’s probably best suited to a dessert wine, sangria mixer, or served very very very chilled…like a wine slush!
Riva 2018 immediately reminded me of Tavola because it’s made with two of the same grape varietals: Edelweiss and Brianna. Tavola also includes the Prairie Star grape, which contributes to its sweetness. Without it, Riva is considerably drier, though still quite juicy with the same hints of apricot, citrus, and peach. The finish is quick and fresh, bright acidity makes the wine kind of burst on your tongue. It’s definitely best served well chilled.
We brought two bottles of Riva 2018 home with us, and they are the perfect summer, sitting on the patio, sipping wine. Our first bottle paired with chicken enchiladas, and while I wouldn’t call it the ideal pairing, it worked. Grilled fish, spinach salad (with some kind of sesame dressing and mandarin oranges), and wood fired pizza would all be great, more seasonal pairing options.