Here is a look at a couple bottles of Chardonnay that I can only describe as highly anticipated. Both Back 10 Cellars and Featherstone work with Canadian Oak barrels and have set a benchmark for consistency and quality. Every incarnation of this wine speaks to the vintage from which it was produced. Either way it is worth heading down to Niagara to grab these bottles as I don’t anticipate them being available at the wineries for long.
2016 Back 10 Cellars Start From Scratch Chardonnay – $27.95 – ****½ – The hot spring and summer has been captured perfectly in this bottle with concentrated aromas of peach and apple. There is a nice funky note that is a signature of the wild ferments of Niagara. But this funk is fighting for attention over all the very ripe fruit. On the palate this opens up with nice weight on the mid palate and a creamy texture. The finish on this wine is long and starts bringing a bit of spice to the table. There is so much going on with this wine that all you need as a food pairing is a second glass.
2016 Featherstone Canadian Oak Chardonnay – $21.95 – ****½ – Aromas of spice are layered over apples, peach and pear. The funky note from the wild yeast is present but well integrated and buried under very ripe fruit thanks to a very hot spring and summer. This opens up with a nice creamy texture on the mid-palate, but it is mated with very nice acidity to keep this wine from being too heavy. The finish on this wine is long with a baking spice note and lingering vanilla. This will make a great match to fried, or roast chicken.