Everyday: New Zealand is not the first place one thinks of when the subject is riesling. Or the second or the third. But the 2013 Giesen New Zealand Riesling is about as good as this varietal gets for $14. Lovely floral and citrus aromas pave the way for tangerine and tropical notes (ginger!) on the palate. There’s ample acidity and minerality as the wine rollicks through an enticing and ample finish. With a swell but hard-to-find pinot gris in its arsenal along with this little gem, Giesen soon will be known for a lot more than its signature Kiwi sauv blanc. It’s a swell brunch wine but also a dandy match for spicy shrimp or chicken dishes. This smooth beauty also would be deftly complemented by that champion of melody and harmony, Mr. Oscar Peterson.
Occasion: Long Island is not the first place one thinks of when the subject is friulano. Or … never mind. Just seek out the superlative 2012 Channing Daughters Sylvanus Vineyard Tocai Friulano ($24). A pristine paragon of stone fruit, nuts and spices, this bone-dry but juicy white is pure and persistent, all the way through a near endless finish. I haven’t been knocked out by many Long Island wines, but this one did the trick. It’s ideal for salumi and almost any other appetizer, plus pasta with seafood or seafood without pasta. The lovely but substantive music of Father John Misty is another spot-on accompaniment.