second label of Bennett Lane Winery
California; 14.5% ABV; screw cap
$4 at the Richmond, CA, store on 21 July
I picked this up as an intriguing and inexpensive mystery wine. It’s a bit too ripe and fruity for my taste, but if you like that sort of thing, this is a delicious quaffer for the price.
A note on Wine Enthusiast says this wine is a blend of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. However, I have a hard time believing there is not also a good component of a perfumed, fruity grape like Viognier or Muscat, as that component generally dominates. (I had guessed a Viognier – Chardonnay blend, perhaps with some Muscat and Sauvignon Blanc.) Somewhat on the nose, but especially on the palate, you get intense, yellow fruit and floral flavors of apple, peach, and melon, with occasional moments of green grape bitterness and, I suspect, a little supporting oak. I felt that the ripe fruit could be a little better balanced with acid, but it’s not dull. Although I’m not sure it will last well into the fall, this should be good summer drinking at a good price.
The next day, the last bit in the bottle was still good, and tasted much more plausibly like a Napa-ripe Chardonnay – SB blend, although that’s possibly just because I learned it’s supposed to be one.