Really Love Your Peaches, Wanna Shake Your Tree

Michael Nagrant / 02.20.08

Some of you may remember I interviewed Cameron Hughes about a year and a half ago. Hughes owns no vineyards, makes no wine, but he has an inside connection to some of the best wineries that do. The way the model works is many top wineries produce wine that either doesn’t fit in to their profile or they make too much of a wine. That’s where Hughes steps in. He buys up the excess lots and then markets them under his own label and sells them direct on his website or through Costco. Because Hughes bypasses traditional middle men and marketing fees, he’s able to offer incredible wines for a value.

Ever since I came back from a recent Terry Theise tasting, I’ve been on a Riesling freakout, so when I noticed Hughes dropped his first Riesling, a Lot 50 2006 from Mosel, I had to try it. I’ve found I’m a high sweet/high acid balance dude when it comes to Riesling, favoring Auslese and BerenAuslese (which basically means really damn sweet, though not cloying mind you), so the Hughes, which is on the drier side came as a bit of a surprise. The Hughes is not your average Chinese takeout pairing Riesling, especially if you’ve got the crab rangoon, plum sauce, and General Tso’s chicken out. Too much residual sweetness from your food will send this bad boy in to Sahara dryness.

The Hughes Reisling instead recalls a glass of Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand that I had last week, but a better version at about $4-5 cheaper a bottle. I really liked the Crawford. I love the Hughes. Theres a lot of crisp brightness, and the peaches drip off this bad boy, reminding me of an August saunter through Chicago’s Green City Market, with a stop for a bite or two out of some ripe beauties from the Flamin’ Fury peach stand. If you like Sauvignon Blanc with a lot of fruit and a good acid finish, for $12 you can’t go wrong with this bottle.

Disclosure: This bottle was a comped sample. At Hungry, we do review comped samples when the products were not made specifically for us, just as if we were reviewing a movie or a CD. All of our restaurant reviews on the other hand are anonymous and paid for by us.