By Elizabeth Lowder

The bone-chilling winter weather of weeks past has had me wanting to get rejuvenated and refreshed for spring. Perhaps I have a case of premature spring fever. The rays of sunshine have begun bursting through the clouds, and the bold greens are starting to peek through the branches along the Riverwalk. Wouldn’t it be nice to grab a bottle of wine and celebrate the dwindling days of cold weather, and welcome warmer days with a picnic? This week’s selection is perfect for just that, it’s a 2012 vintage Sauvignon Blanc from esteemed California winemaker, Cakebread Cellars.

Cakebread Cellars has been a family-oriented vineyard since its inception in 1973, and it prides itself on sharing their family recipes, secrets, and experiences with families from across the globe. A unique factor of Cakebread is that it is one of very few green-certified wineries, which means that the vineyard itself is farmed organically or sustainably.

“With 40 harvests under our belts, and the second generation of winemaking Cakebreads now running the winery, our little family winery has become one of the most successful and respected wineries in America, renowned for its world-class vineyards, wines, and hospitality. It is our commitment to quality, and our history, that we feel truly blessed to share with you,” the website reads.

The winery owns 13 sites, totaling a massive 982 acres, half of which are currently planted. The other half of the land receive tedious care, as to alternate and harvest for the upcoming year. Cakebread Cellars has vineyard properties scattered throughout Napa Valley, as well as a location nestled in the Anderson Valley. These areas of the valley are prime real estate for vineyard, and are notorious for producing top-quality wines.

The 2012 Sauvignon Blanc is Cakebread’s 38th vintage of their Napa Valley collection, and it proves to be one of their best. After all, Napa Valley is the region that brought world recognition to California wine-making, so it’s no surprise that this selection is such a hit. For example, the fresh, vivid aromas swirl and leap out of the glass, just before tasting. Before you take your first sip, you’re already hooked.

This medium-bodied wine delivers a ripe grapefruit, guava, melon, green apple and mineral flavors are remarkably rich, intense, concentrated and vibrant, with a long, full finish packed with fresh fruit and mineral/chalky (a la White Bordeaux) tones.

Savor the flavors of this selection by pairing it with a crisp, summer salad, or even a delicate shrimp scampi dinner, but be sure to leave room for dessert! The key with this Sauvignon Blanc is to keep it light, so dishes with cream bases or sauces might be best enjoyed with a heavier selection.

The 2012 Cakebread Cellars Sauvignon Blanc can be purchased at J.D.’s Market and Spirits, located on 1400 Paul Bryant Drive in Tuscaloosa or online through the vineyard’s website at cakebread.com. The vineyard’s Facebook page is updated regularly with customer reviews and promotions, so be sure to check that out as well at Facebook.com/CakebreadCellars.

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