Spring Wine Picks with Sommelier Hannah Williams

By Christy Knell
April 23, 2023

This delightful change in seasons we are currently experiencing deserves a toast. But what is in our glass? We know just who to ask for recommendations of what to pour—Hannah Williams, HudCo member and (more importantly) beverage director and head sommelier of Blue Hill at Stone Barns. She’s around the office when she’s studying for the Master Sommelier Exam (fun fact: only 25 women have ever passed it in the U.S.), and she has provided us with a short list of her go-to wines for the spring season. And at Thursday’s Member Social Hour, we’ll provide tastes so you can choose your favorite.

Txakolina Whites or Rosés

Look for: Ameztoi, Agerre, Antxiola

Txakoli is a semi-effervescent style of wine served in the Basque Country in the northern part of Spain, that is low ABV, tart, dry, and perfect for the warmer weather. This is what we would call a perfect ‘patio/porch pounder’ and is even sometimes served in a porrón (a glass pitcher that is passed around groups, where you funnel the wine into your mouth).

Ligurian White Wines
Look for: Punta Crena Pigato or Vermentino, Claudio Vio Pigato, Bio Vio

My husband and I spent our honeymoon last summer in Liguria, and I have been obsessed with the whites ever since. Rochambeau always has the Punta Crena Pigato in stock, and it has this beautiful wild fennel and sunflower aroma that we can’t get enough of. They are so complex, yet underrated. With all of the spring greens in play (ramps! green garlic! lovage!), this is the perfect wine to be on the dinner table.

Island Wines

Look for: Domaine Comte Abbatucci, Los Bermejos, Hatzidakis

Whether it is Corsican Bianco Gentile, Greek Assyrtiko, or the Canary Islands Listán Negro, I always seasonally gravitate towards island wines in the spring! It is one of my favorite classes to teach at Blue Hill, and most winemaking islands are based on volcanic soil. You get this mineral-tinged, salt-licked, and sun-kissed character across the board. And they are (usually) very affordable!