Cheap Wine That Doesn't Suck

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As part of his continuing campaign to free wine drinkers from the shackles of chardonnay, Clean Plate Charlie presents. . . torrontes.  


TF, not to put too fine a point on it, is the biggest white wine grape in (and the only indigenous grape to) Argentina. If you've never heard of it, well, that's pretty F'd up, because when done right torrontes makes a lovely wine--crisp without the puckery tartness of sauvignon blanc, floral without the sweetness of many rieslings, light-bodied and refreshing without the bland nothingness of virtually every pinot grigio on the market. 

The 2008 Andeluna Torrontes is an excellent example. For around 10 bucks a bottle you actually get two wines. One is the wine whose aromas waft out of the glass in shades of honeysuckle, orange and ripe peaches. The other is the wine in your mouth--dry but fruity, with hints of orange flower water and a soft, Meyer lemon acidity. It's a really great wine to sip on a hot summer day and would play well with anything from roasted chicken to cream-sauced pastas to subtle Mandarin and Cantonese dishes. 

So now if anyone asks W, you know TF.

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