Mondoza, Argentina; 13.5% ABV
$5 at the Richmond, CA, store about a week ago
This wine’s nice packaging and recent vintage made it look quite promising. It was not really what I expected, but it was pretty good if you want a crisp and structured Chardonnay.
The fruit does have some nice ripeness to it, showing yellow apple and pear, but the acid is quite crisp, with a fairly strong minerally structure. I’ve been hesitant to recommend it to California Chardonnay drinkers, but some people have responded positively to this description. About this wine, G. L. Pease wrote:
I quite liked it, though it’s likely not going to appeal to the California Chardonnay lover, nor will it confuse the Chablis or Mâcon fan. Quite a different thing. Bright, citrusy, a little toasty, minerallic. Restrained ripe pear with an interesting almondy thing going on. I’d guess it to be fermented in barrel, giving it some nice oakiness that’s not overblown, and no one went crazy with the MLF [malolactic fermentation]. No butterbomb here, but enough weight and richness to work well with richer foods. This ain’t your shellfish quaffer. It would stand up nicely to sheeps milk cheeses, fattier cuts of pork (not too heavily seasoned), maybe salmon.
The next day, the rest in the bottle was more smooth and integrated, but otherwise much the same.