We had some great ideas for what wines would go with a Sunday football favorite gumbo feast, but once we looked into where to get those wines, we realized our suggestions would be about as easy as finding a needle in a haystack.
Our immediate choice for Ann Vogel’s gumbo recipe was Sancerre. From France’s Loire Valley, this sauvignon blanc ranges from medium- to full-bodied and is intensely flavored with citrus, herbs, melon and minerals.
It’s a beautiful wine, but it’s also higher up on the price scale than what we’d normally recommend.
Our next thought was its shirt tail cousin: Touraine. Also from along the Cher River in the Loire Valley and made with sauvignon blanc, Touraine is more available than Sancerre, which to the consumer translates to more affordable.
With the typical citrus, melon and grassy flavors all wrapped in a bottle that is about $10, this could have been a contender. Except for the tiny little fact that finding it in Central or South Kitsap is impossible.
But what you can find is a Bordeaux Blanc. However, this wine does not have the requisite citrus we feel would make a perfect pairing for the spicy gumbo.
We decided to leave the vineyards of Europe, taking off to head “down under” for a wine on the other side of the world in New Zealand. Sauvignon blancs from this country are crammed with juicy gooseberries, are mildly herbaceous and have a lot of bright acidity.
And they’re easy to find in Kitsap.
Here’s two we think fit the flavor profile needed to stand up to the fan favorite gumbo.
Massimo 2011 Sauvignon Blanc is made by the winemaker of Kim Crawford wines — one of the more well-known New Zealand wineries. It’s fermented in stainless steel, which brings out bright citrus flavors and a hint of herbs. This wine retails for $10.
Monkey Bay Sauvignon Blanc is our second recommendation. This wine is crisp with acidity and the typical New Zealand flavors of ripe gooseberry and grapefruit.
Sauvignon blanc is the best wine to accompany vegetables, both cooked and raw, and seafood and chicken dishes.