How many times have you heard a pinhead say, "I don't really like Chardonnay?" When did Chardonnay and Merlot become the Octomoms of grapes? Neither one of them deserve the scorn heaped upon them. Gruner Veltliner and Pinotage, now they deserve plenty of scorn, a scornucopia of disparagement, but that's another story. I would defy Chardonnaysayers to turn their nose up to the 2005 Maison Deux Montille Corton Charlemagne, however. This is the stuff dreams are made of, and not the dry ones. How Charlemagne got his name appended to the appellation seems lost in conjecture, some saying he once owned the hill in Corton where the only Chardonnay in this Burgundy appellation is planted; others say his wife, Mrs. Charlemagne, preferred white wine to red because it didn't stain his beard as much. What kind of a slob was he? His wife used to call him Charlemangey. But, I was thinking, wouldn't it be interesting if the United States had named wine appellations for its leaders? So, for example, instead of Finger Lakes maybe we'd have the Finger Bush appellation. Just a thought. The Deux Montille Corton Charlemagne was simply gorgeous, gorgeous the way gorgeous is meant to be gorgeous--simple, understated, naturally gorgeous. The wine possessed a superb nose of hazelnut, ripe green apples, and lemons that developed and expanded significantly over the course of the meal, adding honeyed notes and minerality. What defined this wine was its elegance, a rather vague word, but you know it when it stains your beard. The rich apple and honey flavors come through in the flavor along with the bracing acidity in perfect balance. Long and pretty and complex, it was a fantastic bottle of maligned Chardonnay.
The HoseMaster Score 866,905 Points
Disclaimer: I received this lovely bottle as a gift from a loyal HoseMaster reader. I think we can all learn from her example. And, like her gift, she's gorgeous too.
After 19 years as a Sommelier in Los Angeles, twice named Sommelier of the Year by the Southern California Restaurant Writers' Association, I moved to Sonoma County to explore the other aspects of the wine business. I've spent, OK wasted, 35 years learning about and teaching about and swallowing wine. I am also a judge at the Sonoma Harvest Fair, San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and the San Francisco International Wine Competition--so I can spit like a rabid llama. I know more about wine than David Sedaris and I'm funnier than James Laube. Stay tuned for an informed but jaded view of everything wine and everything else.
I'm living proof that alcohol kills brain cells.
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