Region: Mendocino County, CA
Cost: $13 (SRP)
Winemaker’s Notes: Bold and lively with quintessential Mendocino flavors of crisp apple, Asian pear, and a creamy vanilla-caramel finish.
My Review: Oh Chardonnay, such a hard sell in my home. I received this bottle as part of a larger pack to try, and I’ll admit that I sat on it for a while looking for something to pair it with, since just sipping on Chardonnay doesn’t usually go over well in my house. I’ll admit that I liked the wine more than I thought I would (as did my wife), but is it worth the $13 to pick up a bottle?
In the glass the wine was a light straw yellow in color, and on the nose I picked up aromas of apple and pear. In the mouth the wine started crisp with flavors of pear before rounding out with a finish that was more creamy and buttery; the wine was finished in 20% new French oak and 80% stainless steel, and while the stainless helps those crisp forward notes, the oak really comes through on the finish, though I’ll admit it’s not overly oaked.
My wife and I paired the wine with Chicken Tika Masala and the crisp front of the wine was a nice counter to the food. That being said, the rounder finish would be a nice pairing with herb roasted chicken, so you have options with this wine.
So, the important question really comes down to whether I would buy it. And for this wine I say…maybe?
Look, it didn’t blow my mind, and my palate for whites tends towards crisp and dry (Sauvignon Blanc, Rose’, dry Riesling & Gewurztraminer…you get the point). Given my wife’s distaste for oaked Chardonnay, it’s not something I would usually bring into the house unless I was drinking alone (which is what whisky is for anyways).
All that being said, as far as sub-$15 Chardonnay goes, it wasn’t horrible. For this price point I expected it to be heavily oaked and it certainly avoided that. It had a bit of nuance, and actually got better as the wine warmed after coming out of the cooler, so that’s something.
If you’re on the fence about Chardonnay I don’t see this wine changing your mind, but if you’re looking for that budget white that’s got a bit of body to it, you can (and probably have) do a lot worse than the 2015 Parducci.
Editor’s Note: I received this wine as a free sample for review.