Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Region: Livermore Valley – California – USA
Cost: $15 (SRP)
Winemaker’s Notes: A wonderfully expressive wine that is rich and creamy, yet fresh. Ripe tree fruit flavors of peach, pear, and guava show on the nose and palate. Hints of lemon, subtle herbs, and brioche balance out the fruitiness, and there is a creamy and nuanced finish. Pairs well with herbed pork loin or pasta with your favorite cream sauce.
My Review: I always take a deep breathe before opening a bottle of Chardonnay that’s spent any time in oak (this one spent time in both French and American oak), as my wife is hit or miss on Chardonnay that’s spent time in barrels, preferring stainless steel. However, life is about new experiences, and as I enjoy oaked Chardonnay, sometimes she just has to suck it up (sorry sweetie). Fortunately, with the 2009 Concannon Conservancy Chardonnay we both won.
The wine featured some subtle citrus fruit on the nose, and while I did pick up the pear aromas, I also got a hint of pineapple that I’ve often found in Chardonnay before and enjoy. In the mouth, the wine started out crisp and clean, with good citrus notes balanced out with a bit of body. The finish is where you know the wine spent some time in barrels.
The typical buttery/oaky/brioche finish that one associates with oaked Chardonnay was subtle – present, but really only right at the finish, and did a great job of evening out the fruit and citrus on the front of the wine. With a dinner of pork tenderloin and stuffing, it was a good pairing, and necessary as the tenderloin we had picked up had a lot of pepper on it. Too much really.
I’ve been fortunate enough to review several Concannon wines over the last few years, and one thing they never do is disappoint. Whether you’re a fan of oaked chardonnay or not, the 2009 Concannon Conservancy Chardonnay is definitely one worth checking out. If you can’t find it at your local store you can follow this link and have some sent to your home or office.