2012 Les Chais du Vieux Bourg Côtes du Jura BB1, France, Jura, Wine Review

Always an interesting experience venturing into the Jura.  Made by Ludwig "Lulu" Bindernagel.  75% Chardonnay, 25% Savagnin.  Light medium gold in color.  The nose is interesting.  Almost like a dry sherry that's not oxidized.  Almonds, slightly "fleshy" with a dried orange peel note.  On the palate, there is a nice slightly oily texture.  Some vanilla, minerals, almonds and bits of lemon.  Nice enough acidity.  Long finish.  Very different and hard to put into context.  I liked it and even more so as it warmed.  

2016 Domaine des Terres Dorées (Jean-Paul Brun) Chardonnay Beaujolais Blanc, Wine Review

This was fun to throw into a Burgundy tasting.  Is it on point?  Technically, yes.  And at $15, no harm done.  This is actually a wonderful value for a Chardonnay of this level.  Medium golden in color.  The nose is interesting with minerals, some lemon, and spice.  I wouldn't think this saw oak, but it certainly had some of those characteristics.  On the palate, this is tart with almost a cherry quality which is interesting for a white.  Some minerality.  A bit of depth.  I would prefer a bit more acidity and cut but it was fine.  

2015 Joseph Drouhin / Drouhin-Vaudon Chablis, France, Burgundy, Wine Review

For under $25, this is an excellent value in Chablis, in Burgundy and in Chardonnay.  Light, silvery/gold in color, clear and bright.  The nose has some gun powder and some slight green apples.  Also nice minerality/chalk.  On the palate, this is lively and crisp.  Nice green apple and minerals notes.  Long finish.  This would go great with foods as well.  It should be drunk in the next few years.  

2013 Château de la Maltroye Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Chenevottes, France, Burgundy, Wine Review

Light golden in color.  The nose is nice with minerals/slight chalk and lemon chiffon.  On the palate, this has a nice acidity.  Works well with food.  Some lemons but more about the minerality.  Long finish.  Not sure how this will age but at 5 years from vintage, it is in a great place.  Refreshing but with some complexity.  

2012 Marcassin Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

I have had this before and loved it, but this bottle, not so much.  Perhaps an off bottle or shut down at this time?  Just last summer, I scored it 100 points, so this was curious.  Some liked it more than I, but most of the room seemed to comment that it wasn't what they might have been expecting.  It is good, but this should be one of the preeminent California Chardonnays.  It happens, but I can only review the bottle I drank.  Light green/gold in color.  The nose is dusty with tine, clay, spice and oak.  No fruit.  No noticeable TCA or other faults.  On the palate, it has a nice texture.

2014 Rhys Chardonnay Horseshoe Vineyard, USA, California, Santa Cruz, Wine Review

Rhys Chard's are among my favorite Chardonnay's anywhere.  They often get tagged as "Burgundian" but I think they are a beautiful expression of the grape as grown in Santa Cruz.  This one was pop and pour and it was singing.  Gold/silver in color with slight green.  The nose is great with a lemon-vanilla cream along with a nice mineral base.  On the palate, this is vibrant with great acidity.  Great bright fruit.  Lemon with some vanilla and a nice minerality.  Long finish.  Great with a potato chowder.  Just a beautiful wine.  I think these age well but perhaps shut down at some point only

2010 Tissot (Bénédicte et Stéphane / André et Mireille) Arbois Clos de la Tour de Curon, France, Arbois, Wine Review

Everyone who tried this had the same reaction - this is interesting.  After that some loved it and some hated it.  More of the later I think.  Certainly not for everyone but I enjoyed it.  Deep golden in color.  High toned and a bit oxidized.  Fascinating nose that had a fleshy note, oranges, cumin and acetone.  On the palate, this is very drying.  Orange peel and lots of minerals.  Depth and lots of things going on.  I guess food neutral would be how I would describe it.  Some acidity but it plays in its own world.  

2011 Rhys Alesia Chardonnay Alder Springs Vineyard, USA, California,

Alesia is produced by Rhys with their non-estate fruit.  Alder Springs is one of the idiosyncratic vineyards in California.  North of Sonoma and right on the coast, the vineyard can be drastically different from year to year and they grow a host of different varietals.  Truthfully, I wondered if this fruit got ripe enough in 2011, but now worries.  Not a fruity wine, but enough for sure.

2013 Grgich Hills Chardonnay, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

A classic Napa Chardonnay.  Light golden in color.  This has seen a lot of the oak integrate over the last year or two which is good.  There is still some vanilla on the nose but also some nice lemon cream.  On the palate, this has good acidity.  Lemon with spice and vanilla.  Decent finish.  This is not their top of the line and is priced accordingly.  As such, it presents some value in the Napa Chard world.  Not a stunner but certainly a wine most people at least enjoy.  There is still some possible room for this to improve with a couple more years of cellaring.  

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