Spring is a transitional season for wines just as much as it is for those of us living somewhere with four distinct seasons. Implementing a seasonal rotating wine menu is a great way to keep customers engaged. Just like choosing the proper jacket when the weather can fluctuate 20 degrees in a few hours… selecting the right spring wine is about weight – not color. Implementing a seasonally rotating wine menu is a great way to keep customers excited.
The French have said time and time again: a proper spring wine is a vin de soif – refreshing and thirst quenching. It’ll keep your thirsty guests coming back for more. Wines for spring should have a crisp level of acidity, they are generally light in alcohol and body. A vin de soif should be served chilled.
Light rosés instantly come to mind, but spring wines can be found in every shade. The French know what they’re talking about in this department because most wines of this style are natives of France. These light and refreshing wines are a great way to convince those who don’t consider themselves “wine drinkers” to start.
Turning guests onto these wines is a great way to turn your guests into fervent wine drinkers. Server guidance or tasting notes like those featured on digital menus like Uncorkd are perfect for explaining flavors to wine novices and experts alike.
White wines, Like Roussette, from a region called Savoie, or “Savoy,” are excellent spring suggestions. Savoie is on the Swiss border. The star grape grown here is Altesse, found in Roussette (the grape is sometimes referred to as simply “Roussette”). These little white wine grapes are high in acidity and boast bright floral notes. The only drawback is not much wine comes from this region in general, and even less is exported. The right bottle would be well worth the hunt!
As the seasons change, new foods become readily available. New flavors shout for new pairings and this natural process should be embraced. Some more popular spring wine choices include:
Prosecco is always a great choice for mixing with fresh spring and summer fruits. “Champaign’s cheaper cousin” is a definite crowd-pleaser. Nino Franco Rustico Prosecco has been described as bone dry but balanced with fresh, lively fruit notes leaving the palate refreshed and wanting more. This would be perfect for drinking chilled from the bottle or making a delicious Prosecco cocktail.
Chablis (described as the ultimate shellfish pairing wine). A selection to lookout for is the Jean Paul & Benoit Chablis. This wine is best explained as having the coolness of a typical Chablis with added citrus.
Pinot Grigio (not light to the point of boringness but perfectly crisp and fruity). A relatively new Brazilian Pinot Grigio offers a refreshing twist. In Aracauria Pinot Grigio Riesling, riesling grapes add an unheard-of level of fruitness while pinot grigio grapes balance the sweetness.
Pinot Noir (imagine notes of fruits or florals). Oregon Pinot Noir is all the rage. Try Underwood Pinot Noir for a balance of raspberry and earth.
Gamay (a light-ish bodied red). Think Edmund St. John’s Bone Jolly Gamay from Berkeley, California. Very likable with enough flavor to go with a cheese plate or barbecue.