March Madness Wine Picks | Wine Enthusiast
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March Madness Wine Picks

What New World white wines pair best with potato chips and other classic game-time fare? Our editors selected some bottles that are true champions of snacking refreshment. Chardonnay may get a higher seed, but two contenders hope to make some noise before the buzzer sounds. Or until the chips run out.

Photo by Meg Baggott

Ashan 2014 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay (Columbia Valley); $25, 91 points. Fermented and aged in French oak, this wine brings plenty of toast, plus baking spice aromas and flavors, displaying viscosity and weight that give a sense of gravitas. It’s big and bold enough to stand up to your crinkliest kettle-cooked chips. Try it with sour cream or Cheddar. —Sean P. Sullivan


Photo by Meg Baggott

De Loach Vineyards 2013 Russian River Valley Chardonnay; $18, 90 points. Breaking out old-school Lays or Ruffles? Here’s a slam-dunk pairing. It’s fruity without ever overplaying the oak, yet approachable enough to not go sour when it hits the salt. The wine’s texture is sublime, but sturdy enough to go toe-to-toe with the crunch. —Virginie Boone


Photo by Meg Baggott

Brancott 2015 Pinot Grigio (Marlborough); $14, 89 points. Alongside a simple snack—whether it’s potato or corn chips, popcorn or pretzels—serve a reasonably complex yet affordable wine. This has a touch of sweetness to balance out the salt, ample weight to match your favorite snack’s flavor intensity and enough acidity (together with a hint of gingery spice) to cleanse your palate. —Joe Czerwinski


Photo by Meg Baggott

Château Frank NV Célèbre Crémant Riesling (Finger Lakes); $21, 88 points. There’s nothing like the thrill and excitement of an edge-of-your-seat game with two evenly matched teams battling it out. So why not match your salty snacks with a sipper of equal, yet opposite, gusto? This sparkling wine boasts enough ripe stone-fruit flavors and vibrant bubbles to counter­attack the play of chips and dip. —Alexander Peartree