White-out?



You could be forgiven for not having noticed, but the first week of May was “World Wine Week.” The second week of this well-blessed month has been declared “British Sandwich Week,” perhaps appropriate enough, as the handy meal was invented—or at least named--in England. In between these two sort-of events, May 6 was designated “International Sauvignon Blanc Day.” Busy month for food and wine! 
         What was most interesting about Sauvignon Blanc Day was that the official Bordeaux Blanc group made a great deal of noise about it, celebrating its principal grape with much fanfare, but didn’t once mention the minor but crucial partner in the blend, Semillon. If ever there were a grape worthy of being acclaimed as Best Supporting Actor, Semillon should win in a walk, but it seems to be a victim of fashion. It was once a serious contender in Washington State, but even Pinot Grigio has overtaken it there, and Chile has cut back its acreage. Only Australia honors it (and does it proud, as proven by a recent bottle of Tyrell's Hunter Valley 2005), which may be something to consider while we ponder our wine choices for “Barbecue Week,” which is the last week of May. Shiraz, anyone?

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