Last week I tasted the 2009 Parducci chardonnay, of which 7,000 cases were made. Not exactly a giant amount, and considering the winery's suggested retail of $10.99, a rare case of a small production winery not charging a lot for their (damn tasty) wine.
The 2009 Parducci spent eight months aging, in 95% stainless steel tank and 5% American oak barrels. Eight separate properties contributed to this vintage's wine, and I was pleased to note that all were certified Fish Friendly Farming, meaning that the vineyards took rigorous steps to ensure that wetlands, creeks, streams, rivers, and aquifiers weren't harmed by the growing operations. Check out the Fish Friendly Farming website for more information, this is something a lot more Napa and Sonoma growers need to get in on.
|(img src http://www.parducci.com/product/2009-Parducci-Chardonnay)
The color, as it pouerd into the glass, reminded me of pale straw. This isn't a typical California golden-colored chardonnay. I was reminded of a 2008 Burgundy, in the best of ways. Simply put, the color was lovely to behold.
I never know how to begin the paragraphs where I describe a wine's aroma and palate presence, but I suspect using the simplest, most direct approach will help you out.
The 2009 Parducci chardonnay smelled a lot like ripe red apples and Bartlett pears, along with some very pleasant aromas of lemon zest. The more I swirled, the more I picked up an buttercream note too, something rich, thick, and delicious. I did keep getting subtle flavors of tropical fruit, like fresh cut pineapples in a mango smoothie, but they were fleeting. No oak and no buttered-popcorn flavors that I associate with malolactic fermentation. Score!
My first few sips brought great acidity, lemon juice and pineapple notes. I liked how the acid transitioned into a creamy mouthfeel, the Parducci chardonnay turned smooth and velvety with a hint of fresh flowers. Both the crisp and creamy textures were balanced pretty well, so the wine was one of those I'd describe as "easy drinking". Nothing to fight with, the flavors were all working together in harmony. Winemaker Bob Swain crafted a very good chardonnay here, with a finish that gently fades away.
All in all, I liked the 2009 Parducci chardonnay, from the nice aromatics to the pleasing mouthfeel. I would like to see more depth of flavor, the wine did seem fairly linear but that's a minor gripe considering this costs $11 (less if you search around). I can give this a B and a STRONG BUY recommendation, especially since it's that type of chardonnay so conducive to summertime drinking. No heavy handed oak or malolactic treatment, just a balanced, delicious bottle of wine at a ridiculously good price.
Once again Parducci brings it with great quality at the price point. Let me know if you happen to try this, I always enjoy hearing reader feedback.
This wine was a media sample for review purposes.