Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Region: Russian River Valley – California – USA
Cost: $25 (SRP)
Winemaker’s Notes: Pale straw in color with aromas of freshly baked bread, honey, and lime. Slightly floral with notes of yeast, lemon, and apricot. A refreshing and balanced sparkling wine with tiny bubbles and good acidity. Pairs well with slightly spicy dishes such as crawfish etouffee, fresh seafood including halibut and oysters on the half shelll, or with soft, savory cheeses such as Brie.
My Review: So I had gone back and forth on whether to enjoy this sparkling wine with my wife by ourselves, or to take it up to my parent’s house next week to have available for Thanksgiving. It’s a good thing I opened it at home. Now, before you think I’m speaking ill of the wine, I’m not. In fact, what I was able to drink of it was quite enjoyable, with light notes of acid and apples to me and good subtle notes of honey and baked bread on the nose.
No, the reason that it’s a good thing I opened the bottle at home is because it exploded. Now, I’m not going to claim to be an expert at all things sparkling wine, but I do know how to open them without them blowing up in my face, and when I eased the cork out of the bottle, the fount of wine covered the better part of my kitchen, so it’s a good thing it happened at my house on a Monday night as opposed to at my parent’s house all over Thanksgiving dinner.
I’m not positive, but I suspect that this cork had something to do with the explosion of wine all over my kitchen. Pretty sure my floor is going to be sticky for a while. Either way, we lost half the wine, but were able to sip at the rest, and I will say that what I was able to taste was enjoyable. Mind you, I can’t speak for certain on whether or not the wine was compromised as to what the winemaker intended, but it certainly still had plenty of tiny bubbles and good crisp flavors.
I’m certain that I just got the bad luck of the draw on this sample, and to be honest if it was going to happen to somebody, it’s better that it was me with a sample that was sent to me than somebody that purchased the wine. If you’re looking for an approachable sparkling wine to put out for your holiday dinners and parties, I think that the crisp flavors will appeal to a lot of palates, even those that don’t normally drink sparkling wine.