Right-Coast Chard

Pale, almost clear green in the glass, a nose dustily dank while strong with rich floral and lecithin: a tallow sort of vegetal but played out well on fuschia and lily. Slight smoke glosses the bouquet, each swirl adding more evergreen and wet-wool nuances. A most interesting Chardonnay, but let’s taste it.

Sweet and ripe throughout the palate, it hits the tongue with positive sugar approaching syrupy quotients well-played with bitter subtlties. Sharp green tannins arrive early-middle, each addition of mild structure placating the sweetness. This HAS to be 10 g/l, either that or just the way east-coast Chard presents itself in mouth-feel. Acidity is there, climbing to almost-spritzy levels noticeable early and late, all eyes on the gloriously bitter background keeping things in relative balance. Chardonnay can be a strange bird: presenting lush roundness masquerading as sugar. The sharpness–in areas–points at SS, though neutral oak would go a long way in moderating some of these juxtapositions.

This wine comes off big in certain areas, while the sweetness keeps it simple in others. I suppose I expected a bit more shrillness coming from north-eastern wines, but here all things manifest themselves in rich sugar. They definitely got this thing ripe. It drinks almost as an off-dry Riesling–honestly–but with the natural butteriness Chard manages with aplomb.

2021 CHADDSFORD Chardonnay Pennsyvania 13.0


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