Torrontés is the New Malbec
Just as colors cycle in and out of fashion (brown is the new black– or is it navy?), so do certain grapes. Malbec, for example, has been all the rage in Argentina. This year, we predict it will be trumped by Torrontés, an aromatic white grape that’s now Argentina’s most-planted white. The wines are dry, crisp and reasonably priced (most are under $20). Look for 2007 Crios and Bodega Colomé wines.
Hungary’s Excellent Table Wines
The famed home of Tokaji, one of the world’s great dessert wines, Hungary is also becoming a source of graceful (and often affordable) table wines, too. Try the plummy, robust 2004 Vylyan Mini-Evolution ($16) red blend or the lime-scented, minerally 2005 Dobogó Furmint ($30).
New World Négociants
In the French wine industry, entrepreneurs who want to make wine but don’t own vineyards become négociants, buying their grapes from growers. This longtime practice is now popular in California, with many winemakers sourcing fruit from several locations. Siduri Winery, for example, uses Pinot Noir from 23 Oregon and California vineyards. Many growers sell to a handful of winemakers, resulting in varied renditions on the same grape. For a comparative tasting, try the 2006 Rosella’s Vineyard (above) Pinot Noirs from Siduri ($48), Loring Wine Company ($50) and A.P. Vin ($48).