Wine #6

Over the last several posts I've guessed incorrectly. To be honest, I'm not too upset since the whole point is to at least put forth a sincere effort... regardless of the outcome, I can then concentrate on how to improve next time. 

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For this wine, we return to Corkbuzz Wine Studio in the Union Square area of Manhattan.  

In full disclosure, originally I was going to guess something else... and then my husband and I were discussing tasting notes and he helped clarify what I was tasting... This was before I had formalized the idea for this blog. It's not cheating if you didn't have rules yet, right? Anyway, I'm including it here and since it was a valuable lesson.

It was the last white wine of the blind-tasting flight, and it was definitely the most flavorful on the nose. First thing that came to mind: New World. As far as color, more golden than the other two wines, fuller bodied.

Take a sniff: Wood? Something funny... I recognize this... just dont know what to call it.

Taste: Citrus. Something floral.

Some floral notes. Herbal. Super powerful white wine.

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what are YOU thinking?

My guess initially was something like a Viogner (a fuller white wine), but then I recognized what I was detecting on the nose & palate:

BUTTER.

I knew that I recognized the flavor profile, but I wasnt sure how to describe it... which is one of the most frustrating feelings. Ever.

Unfortunately, it is quite common for me. Attaching meaning or words to sensory recognition is by far the most challenging aspect of blind tasting for me thus far. Hopefully with practice, the descriptor words will come to mind more, and more, fluently. 

So, to get back on track, as soon as my astute husband said he got "buttery" notes, I KNEW what this wine was...



CORRECT ANSWER:



CALIFORNIA CHARDONNAY

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tasting notes from the winery...

The fruit for this bottling comes from our sites in the Santa Rita Hills, Santa Maria and Santa Ynez appellations. The average age of the vines is over 25 years and is from specific parcels of Wente selection. The wine is pale gold in the glass with a toasty nose and citrus hints of lime peel. The palate is vibrant with good structure showing plenty of restraint, balance and salinity. The wine’s expressive aromatics and generous texture are balanced by a lively acidity and great uplift in the finish. This is a nice entry-level offering and is a great introduction to the style of our wines.


So, we've already talked about some Chardonnay from Northern France (CHABLIS).

It is hard to believe that this is THE SAME GRAPE, just grown in a different place. Namely, a WARMER place, so it will have more body/alcohol and more pronounced fruity flavors. Note on the map how it is more inland and south than San Francisco... (The famous regions of Napa/Sonoma are North of SanFran.

The other major difference is that this wine was thrown in some Oak Barrels.

The oak aging is what gives the wine the "BUTTAH" flavor and creamy mouthfeel. The wine goes through a process when it is in barrels called:

MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION

which converts harsh malo-acid into the creamy lactic-acid.

(Get it? Lactic, like milk & cream... It is so nice when things make sense.)


So, I'll take the assist on this one...

At least I think this experience really nailed home what to expect from a "buttery", sunny, Californian Chardonnay.