2006 Clos Lapeyre Jurançon Sec

Jurançon comes in two varieties, sweet or dry. But for spring and summer drinking, you want the dry, or sec. This offering from Clos Lapeyre is a lovely alternative to Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc. It's a unique white, pale gold in color, with a novel flavor profile of sweet lime and toasted almonds coupled with a bright mineral acidity. The grape, if you're curious, is peculiar to the region in France and called Gros Manseng. And winemaker Jean-Bernard Larrieu makes one of the best Jurançon secs around.

Serve it well-chilled as an apéritif with toasted Marcona almonds and a bowl of olives. It's also quite delicious with prosciutto or jamón serrano on toasted bread, or with a fines herbes omelet and a salad. Grilled seafood is a natural too.

--S. Irene Virbila

Region: Southwest France

Price: About $15

Style: Crisp and minerally

Food it goes with: Almonds and olives, prosciutto or ham on toast, omelets, seafood

Where you find it: K&L Wine Merchants in Hollywood, (323) 464-9463, www.klwines.com; Mission Wines in South Pasadena, (626) 403-9463, www.missionwines.com; Silver Lake Wine in Los Angeles, (323) 662-9024 www.silverlakewine.com; Wine Exchange in Orange, (714) 974-1454 and (800) 769-4639, www.winex.com; Woodland Hills Wine Co. in Woodland Hills, (818) 222-1111, www.whwc.com.

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