St. James Winery’s Friendship School White, a mix of Cayuga and Vidal grapes, is one of our favorite wines to bring as a gift to friends houses. It’s crisp light flavor makes it a wine perfect to accompany a wide range of food. Plus, it’s what my husband and I call a “perfect compromise wine” – he likes wine a little sweeter, while I lean towards the dry. For you numbers folks, this wine just won 2013 Best of Class at the Los Angeles International scoring 97 points.

We were excited to receive a sample pouch of St. James Winery’s Friendship School White for our review and took it on a recent kayaking trip to Carlye Lake. We loved how this pouch chilled really fast in our cooler, plus you didn’t have to bother with a wine opener. In each pouch is 6 glasses of wine – 1 liter. Once the pouch is open, you can reseal it and it will remain fresh for 4 weeks!

Jim & Pat Hofherr opened St. James Winery in St. James, Missouri in 1970, when the area was known as the Little Italy of the Ozarks. St. James is Missouri’s largest winery, producing over 200,000 cases per year. St. James’ wine is distributed to retail stores in 17 states in the Midwest and the South. They truly have a huge variety of wine – dry to sweet fruit wine. See our review of St. James Winery’s Norton here.

The Varietal:
Friendship School White is a semi-dry white wine made from a blend of Cayuga and Vidal grapes. Vidal was developed in the 1930s by French wine grape breeder Jean Louis Vidal; his primary goal in developing the variety was for the production of Cognac in the Charente-Maritime region of western France. However, due to its winter hardiness this grape variety is cultivated most extensively in cooler climates like the Midwest and Canada.

The Cayuga grape was developed from crosses of the hybrids Schuyler and Seyval Blanc at Cornell University’s New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, New York. It is a hardy vine with disease resistance perfect for Midwest humid summers.

The Pour:

We drank our Friendship School White in our favorite camping cups (see photo above) – the stainless steel double wall construction are perfect to keep the wine chilled and the bugs out. Plus, you can rinse them out and put coffee in them in the morning. Love it!

The Sniff:

The smell of this wine has a barely there hint of lemon and apples. Or maybe it is our stainless steel camping cups?

The Taste:
We love that this is the perfect light white wine. It has flavors of fresh, crisp green apples, lemon and lime.

Pairs with:

Friendship School White may be the perfect white wine to easily pair. Since its not overpowering with flavor, it will go well with seafood, white pasta, and most cheese and crackers. We serve ours with chicken fish and even all vegetarian meals like the below:


We drank our Friendship White with a Portobello mushroom Caprese salad, a super easy and delicious meal. Simply grill portobello mushrooms and then spread on the pesto. Serve with fresh tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and fresh basil leaves.

We can’t wait to buy more of these pouches! If my hubby is out and I’m home with the kiddo, I can now just have a glass of wine and not worry about if the bottle of wine is spoiled 2 days later. The pouches are sold in the St. James Winery Tasting room, plus online by the case. They are just starting to distribute the pouches, so if you want these wines at our favorite wine retailers, request them.

Vintage: 2013
Grape: Cayuga and Vidal
Producer: St. James Winery
Price: TBD
Alcohol: 11.4%
Produced and Bottled: St. James, Missouri
Glass used: Innate stainless steel tumbler with lid

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