BERKELEY (KCBS) – Being a judge in the Pacific Coast Oyster Wine Competition is one of my favorite assignments. I love oysters, and finding the wine that gives you the perfect balance when eating an oyster is more involved than you might think.
Judges are instructed to take a small oyster, slurp it raw, then chew for a few seconds before even picking up the glass of wine. Otherwise you could be seduced by the aromas and characteristics of the wine before even getting to the oyster. Only after tasting the oyster do you then take a sip of wine.
The idea is to find the wine that will be the best complement to the oyster. Judging is done in Seattle, Los Angeles and San Francisco, with all the scores combined.
As often happens, most of the wines on this year’s list are sauvignon blanc. Besides a dry chenin blanc and a pinot grigio, the 2013 winners include the first Riesling in a long time, a Trefethen dry Riesling.
2013 “OYSTER AWARD” WINNERS
**Cedargreen Cellars 2011 Sauvignon Blanc (WA)
**Chateau Ste. Michele 2012 Sauvignon Blanc (WA)
**Dry Creek 2012 Dry Chenin Blanc (CA)
**Geyser Peak 2012 Sauvignon Blanc (CA)
**Kunde 2012 Sauvignon Blanc (CA)
Long Meadow Ranch 2012 Sauvignon Blanc (CA)
*Three Pears 2012 Pinot Grigio (CA)
Trefethen 2011 Dry Riesling (CA)
Vinoce 2012 Sauvignon Blanc (CA)
*Willamette Valley 2011 Pinot Grigio (OR)
*Prior Oyster Award
**Multiple Prior Oyster Awards
Narsai David is the KCBS Food and Wine Editor. He has been a successful restaurateur, chef, TV host, and columnist in the Bay Area spanning four decades. You can hear him Saturdays at 10:53 a.m., 12:53 p.m. and 4:53 p.m., and at 2:53 a.m. Sunday on KCBS All News 740AM and 106.9FM.
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