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This Aussie Chardonnay May Make You Rethink Your Red Wine Only Allegiance
Most wine drinkers fall into the two main camps of red wine drinkers and white wine drinkers. While some are “all or nothing” red or white drinkers, I’d venture to say many of us prefer one camp over the other, but we don’t exclusively identify with just that one type of wine (ahem, politics, anyone?).
I myself prefer red wine over white. It’s usually much more interesting to me and also the health-promoting polyphenols are found in the reds, not the whites, so it’s for that reason also.
However, Chardonnay is a white wine that surprises me at each new encounter and causes me to question my red-wine-only preferences. It is such an intriguing grape, expressing itself in the glass in countless different ways. I’ve become fascinated with it lately, and my goal is to become better acquainted with it. #winegoals
Chardonnay is a noble white wine grape that is grown all over the world and does well in a variety of climates. It can be aged in oak barrels, which impart notes of vanilla, coconut, etc. or in stainless steel tanks, which do not impart any flavors and allow the wine to express itself in an unadulterated fashion. Some Chardonnays undergo malolactic fermentation, a process whereby malic acid is converted to lactic acid, and this results in the unctuous, buttery notes you sometimes get in a Chardonnay.
In keeping with my little Aussie theme this week, I’ve got a wonderful Chardonnay for you (not Yellow Tail). 😉 This Australian Chardonnay I tried recently
made me weep with ecstasy made me stand back and take note of how serious and attention-worthy some white wines can be! It’s from the Adelaide Hills region in South Australia. Penfolds notes that it is “A contemporary style Chardonnay, fresh and finely structured. This wine delivers pure fruit flavours balanced by bright, crisp natural acidity and complexity afforded from time in barrel.” According to Wine Folly: The Master Guide (As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases), some Aussie winemakers are – get this – bridging the gap between the two style camps of oak-aged Chardonnay and stainless steel Chardonnay, and combining the two in their bottles of wine. A great idea I can get behind because the wine it yields is outstanding!
Here is the scoop on the Penfolds Max’s Chardonnay 2018:
- Pale straw color
- Full body, 13% ABV
- Modest acidity
- Aromas/flavors: stone fruits, baked apple, lime, grapefruit, rose, white flowers, balanced by compelling minerality
- Moderate finish, good warmth and acidity on the finish
So, whether you fancy white or red, look around for this Chardonnay when you want a wine that is beautiful, strong, elegant, and endlessly intriguing.
How about you? Do you have an Australian (or any) kind of Chardonnay you love? Do tell!
*Unfortunately this particular wine is out of stock at the moment on wine.com. 😦
But when I asked for some other similar recommendations, these were mentioned. 🙂
Please note I have not personally tried these yet, but they sound great and are in keeping with the style of the Penfolds Chardonnay. Until then, keep your eyes peeled for this wine or try the following!
- Devil’s Corner Chardonnay 2021 is a cool-climate Chardonnay with a more acidic flavor profile – from Tasmania!
- Howard Park Miamup Chardonnay 2020 is a very sea-influenced style Chardonnay from Margaret River
- Vintage Longbottom H Chardonnay 2019 is another Chardonnay from Adelaide Hills like the Penfolds Max’s, just slightly higher in price point by about $10