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Celebrating Chardonnay

by Jane Berg

Chardonnay 101 Sampler

France

Normally $222.00
SPECIAL SAMPLER PRICE $178.00
(a 20% discount)

This item does not take further discounts

Today, we’re celebrating Chardonnay’s star power with a few wines from its historical birthplace in and around Burgundy. Chardonnay is a remarkable chameleon—it has the keen ability to reflect and embody the micro-nuances of the environment in which it’s grown. In cooler regions, Chardonnay reveals some of its truest expressions, managing to make a range of diverse terroirs speak loudly and clearly of their singular places of origin. At a glance the wines we’ve selected are similar in profile, but in the glass you’ll be struck by their individuality.
         On the outskirts of Lyon, Ghislaine Dupeuble bottles a light-bodied, thirst-inspiring Beaujolais blanc made from 100% Chardonnay. What’s captured in this bottling is a rare treat, since most Chardonnay plantings around here were uprooted to make way for Gamay. Vinified in stainless steel, this wine is delightfully easy-drinking, and food-friendly beyond reproach.
        Venture into the Mâconnais by comparing two bottlings side-by-side: A racy, citrus-driven Mâcon-Farges from Henri Perrusset and a rounder, sturdier Saint-Véran from the beloved Robert brothers. The former is delicate and transparent, while the latter, raised in neutral oak, is broad-shouldered and persistent. Grown only 25 miles apart, you’ll marvel at the stark differences. 
        Perhaps the most convivial cuvée of the bunch is Valentin Montanet’s Bourgogne Blanc, a quintessential bistro-style Chardonnay that tastes of pure plaisir—perfect when you’re feeling peckish, or in the mood for a picnic. 
        Up north in Chablis, Domaine Costal’s Les Truffières demonstrates all the magic of a cooler climate, where this Chardonnay grows on fossil-laden Kimmeridgian marl. Young Chablis is impossibly energetic, with flinty minerality and verve, making it exceedingly cellar-worthy. Drink now with zero regrets, or, wait a few years for the notes of waxy honeycomb, citrus skin, and sea salt to set in.
         And lastly, don’t wait for a special occasion to uncage the holy grail of Chardonnay: an exceptionally brut Blanc de Blancs from Veuve Fourny. Thanks to the bright white chalky soil of Vertus, this wine delivers saline minerality, precision, and toasty aromatics laced together by a super-fine bead.



Sampler Includes:

2019 Beaujolais Blanc • Domaine Dupeuble $19
2018 Bourgogne Blanc • La Soeur Cadette $32
2019 Mâcon-Farges “Vieilles Vignes” • Henri Perrusset $24
2018 Saint-Véran “Les Pommards Vieilles Vignes” • Domaine Robert-Denogent $52
2018 Chablis “Les Truffières” • Henri Costal $35
N.V. Blanc de Blancs Brut 1er Cru • Veuve Fourny et Fils $60

Normally $222.00
SPECIAL SAMPLER PRICE $178.00
(a 20% discount)

Every three or four months I would send my clients a cheaply made list of my inventory, but it began to dawn on me that business did not pick up afterwards. It occurred to me that my clientele might not know what Château Grillet is, either. One month in 1974 I had an especially esoteric collection of wines arriving, so I decided to put a short explanation about each wine into my price list, to try and let my clients know what to expect when they uncorked a bottle. The day after I mailed that brochure, people showed up at the shop, and that is how these little propaganda pieces for fine wine were born.—Kermit Lynch

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Drinking distilled spirits, beer, coolers, wine and other alcoholic beverages may increase cancer risk, and, during pregnancy, can cause birth defects. For more information go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov/alcohol


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