Sauvignon Blanc! Barefoot? No Thanks. 12/24/10

Gifting wine to a vinophile is a risky business. Unless you have a means at your disposal of finding out his favorites (like, I dunno, maybe a wine blog he writes), you might end up buying a bottle he’s already had – or worse, one he wouldn’t even want to touch with a 10-foot wine stick.

On the other hand, receiving wine can pose an equally daunting challenge for the grape lover, especially this time of year, when I’ve noticed a certain backwards sect of Jews tend to observe some sort of celebratory, ritualistic gift exchange. It’s always important to be polite, but just remember: it never that important, so be sure to speak your mind if someone tries to give you a crappy wine and pass it off as a favor.

And with that, I’ll segue to the Barefoot Sauvignon Blanc – nonvintage (that means the grapes don’t come from any year in particular, often due to their not being good enough). The wine, available in the $5-7 range and from (sigh) California, was brought to me by a well-intentioned but hopelessly foolish friend, who shall remain nameless, and will hopefully never read this.

The bottle did have an interesting green and gold color scheme, but as even my seldom-sane sister pointed out, the giant foot sole on the front label wasn’t exactly the most appetizing graphic they could’ve chosen. Also I’m pretty sure it’s an egregious insult to many millions of Muslims, which I do suppose makes the wine more patriotic, so it’s got that going for it.

Getting to the wine itself, it poured a very light, almost colorless straw, and gave off low- to moderate-intensity aromas of lime, with subtler hints of honeydew and some grassiness that could be perceived as green olive, or just grass. Dry on the palate, the wine gave way to eventual lemon-lime flavors, and was exceptionally light-bodied (even for Sauvignon Blanc). It also lacked the acidity I would expect from the varietal and came off as rather flabby as a result. The finish was short and hot, a product of excessive alcohol. Not much complexity here either, even considering the price.

I award (to use the term generously) the Barefoot Sauvignon Blanc thumbs up – and that’s a D, people. I’m giving the wine credit (though admittedly not very much) for having some interesting scents. And with that, I must bid you adieu: it’s Christmas Eve, I hear, so I’m about to crack open a nice box of red wine and engage in the appropriate merriment.

But if you’ve all been good this year, maybe – just maybe – Santa or Jesus or whoever will give the whole world the greatest gift of all: brand new reviews, two days in a row!

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