Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Yay Australia! (Kangarilla Road Chardonnay)

My swill wine streak has finally been broken.  Upon the recommendation of a fellow employee and Aussie by birthright, I picked up a delicious Chardonnay from the Maclaren Vale in Australia.  Honestly I don't know why I even bother buying wine that I have heard nothing about.  It seems buying random wine off the shelves runs a 80% likelihood of it being a sub par wine.  Whenever someone recommends a wine I find it is almost 100% chance of it being a good wine, that is assuming the person knows something about wine.

Producer: Kangarilla Road
Region: McLaren Vale, Australia
Grape: Chardonnay
Vintage: 2007
Price: $17

Notes: The texture of this wine is mind blowing.  It is like drinking a mix of butter and silk, coating the mouth and throat with delicious Melon, Butter and Vegetal flavours with hints of Peach, Vanilla, and Green apple.  This wine delivers interesting flavours and aromas that aren't the exact same as one another.  I really liked it, but if you really love big Chardonnays I would probably avoid it, on the other hand if you don't drink a lot of Chardonnay and you want to try one that isn't over the top this would be a good starting point.  It's not a humongous Chardonnay, but it isn't meek either.  30% of the wine was fermented in new french barriques and the wine delicately displays the flavours of the oak.  My final verdict: A for Awesome well worth the price.

What is a barrique?
I'm glad you should ask.  A barrique is a barrel, a rather small and common barrel as far as wine barrels go.  It holds 225 L or 300 bottles of wine and was first developed in Bordeaux.  Size of an oak barrel has a big impact on the wine.  The larger a barrel the less contact the wine has with the oak meaning less flavour will be imparted.  Another factor  affecting oakyness of a wine is whether it is new or used oak.  New oak lends more flavour to a wine than used oak.  Just because a wine is oak aged does not mean it will have an oaky quality, it all depends on the barrels used.

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