jamie goode's wine blog: More Chardonnay

Thursday, December 28, 2006

More Chardonnay

Had a great day. We met up with some good friends and their kids at Box Hill for a hearty walk, followed by lunch at the Abinger Hatch in Abinger Common. The London Pride was tasting good today.

No adverse effects from yesterday's modest indulgence, so it was back to wine tasting this evening with a vengence. Among the wines sampled, a really impressive unoaked Californian Chardonnay (I didn't know that California did unoaked Chardonnay, but clearly it exists).

Marimar Estate Don Miguel Vineyard Acero Chardonnay 2005 Russian River Valley, California
Aromatic and fruity, this well balanced Chardonnay shows quite rich tropical fruit/pineapple notes countered nicely by some lemony acidity. There's plenty of richness, but it's not at all overdone: balance is maintained. Unoaked, and probably better for it. The alcohol level, at 13.5%, is pretty sane for a Californian Chardonnay, too, which suggests that they got the balance right on the vine. I like this. Very good/excellent 90/100

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At 6:22 PM, Anonymous amy christine said...

As a CA resident and sommelier, just a note that unoaked and slightly oaked Chardonnay is very much in fashion in CA. People - especially winemakers - are tired of oak butter bombs. Melville, Lioco, Chehalem, Brewer-Clifton, Stony Hill, Stag's Leap are some examples of unoaked Chard. What's irritating, however, is the rhetoric I hear everyday about attempting a Burgundian style. I love White Burgundy, but why try to make CA Chard taste like it's from France? CA wines have their own merits and are special for their own reasons.

At 11:25 AM, Blogger Jamie said...

amy christine - quite agree. This wine was delicious but there's clearly no attempt here to ape Burgundy. There's no need to, as you point out: Californian wines can stand on their own merits.

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