Wine of the week: Ryder Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Ryder Estate sauvignon blancThe Ryder Estate sauvignon blanc reminds us that California can still offer delicious cheap wine that offers quality and value

Regular visitors here know how despondent the Wine Curmudgeon has been the past three or four months, what with rising wine prices, decreasing wine quality, and an increasing amount of foolishness from the wine business. And then, from out of nowhere, the Ryder Estate sauvignon blanc arrived.

Ryder Estate is made by one of the oldest producers in Monterey County, but I’d never heard of it until the samples arrived. That was my loss. The wines were mostly enjoyable and fairly priced, and the chardonnay and rose were especially well made. The Ryder Estate sauvignon blanc ($12, sample, 13.5%) was even better, almost certain to make the 2019 $10 Hall of Fame and a candidate for the 2019 Cheap Wine of the Year.

This is California wine at its best, and something we don’t see much these days. It offers quality and value, as well as professional winemaking to make those happen. It’s true California sauvignon blanc, and not tarted up with sweet grape juice, flavored with fake oak, or a New Zealand sauvignon blanc knockoff. It’s varietally correct and delicious – fresh, grassy, stony, a bit of citrus and a hint of tropical fruit, and much more balanced than I expected or that we usually see in sauvignon blanc at this price.

Chill this and drink it on its own on a warm summer evening, or pair with grilled chicken or shrimp marinated in olive oil, garlic, and lemon juice. And then you can worry a little less about the future of the wine business.

2 thoughts on “Wine of the week: Ryder Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2017

  • By DK -

    This sounds like a great summer wine. How does this compare with the Wente SB that was Wine of the Week a few weeks ago?

    I found this on the BevMo website, $18.95 each or 2 for $19.00. Guess the BevMo “5 cent sale” bait and switch is alive and well!!

    Thanks for this review.

    • By Wine Curmudgeon -

      That’s a terrific question. I think the difference is mostly where the wines are from, the difference between Livermore for the Wente and Monterey County for the Ryder. In other words, the same style, but differences in terroir.

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