Tasting this Chablis-style (unwooded) Chardonnay ignited an instant craving for oysters, scallops, and any other sea creature that comes from a shell. The searing acidity, crisp citrus fruit, green apple and peach are balanced with a round full mouth feel from time on the lees and a striking flinty minerality. Consume this wine no cooler than 60 degrees. It is the perfect wine for your ABC (Anything But Chardonnay) friends to remind them why this wonderful grape, unencumbered by butter, vanilla, and spice, is a treasure to savor.
The first thing you notice about this wine is the intense dark, almost inky color. It is a hint of the richness and opulence to come. The single lot of four classic Portuguese cultivars, all planted in 1965, are “field blended,” as they are hand harvested at the same time. The result is a smooth, rich, round, well integrated wine of berries and spice. Perfect with dark chocolate, stinky cheeses, or just a good book by a warm fire.
“Rubber” has become synonymous with Pinotage, at least partly due to the power of suggestion. But you won’t find a hint of it here, even if you try. Aging in heavily toasted oak gives the wine an aromatic nose of mocha, coffee, and chocolate along with the more typical Pinotage nose of smoked bacon. On the palate, cherry, plum and almonds mingle with the continuing mocha and bacon notes ending with a velvety smooth finish. Does not come across as your normal Pinotage! While chocolate or mocha desserts are a more obvious match, it would be fantastic with a more traditional Mexican dish covered in that chili-chocolate hybrid known as molé sauce.