The wines I’m featuring today are slightly more expensive than my usual under $10 bottles, but since this time of year there are lots of parties (graduations, wedding showers, oh-hell-they’re-out-of-school-where’s-the-wine neighborhood gatherings, etc), a slightly more upscale wine might just be the right ticket. Or, heck, treat yourself; it’s the weekend.
Kendall Jackson Avant Chardonnay 2012 Santa Rosa, CA Alcohol 13.5% by Volume; Regularly $14.99, on sale at Vons for $11.99
On the Label: “Our Kendall Jackson AVANT Chardonnay is crafted in a modern style that delivers a fresh expression of this exceptional grape. This wine is cold-fermented to retain crisp green apple and lemon drop flavors; the resulting wine is sleek and lively, providing a superb affinity for food.
“To learn more about our sustainable practices and the 100% renewable wind energy we employ to make our wines, visit us at www.kj.com.”
My Take: Well, once again if I’d read the label I wouldn’t have bought the wine. Green apple and lemon drop in the same sentence makes me think of hard candy, or perhaps flavored vodka. Wine is the very last thing that comes to mind. However, this is a nice wine – not, to my taste buds, noticeably a Chardonnay, but a clean and crisp white that goes great with seafoods or light pasta dishes, charcuterie, cheeses, etc. I have to say, while I might not be a fan of KJ’s labels, I am a fan of their wines!
My Rating: ~ Very Drinkable ~ Plus it has a screw top, and I’m all for easy-open bottles.
DeLoach Vineyards Zinfandel 2011 Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, CA Alcohol 14.5% by Volume; Regularly $18.99, on sale at Vons for $11.99
On the Label: “As a family-owned winery widely considered a pioneer of Russian River winemaking, we take great pride in producing distinctive wines that highlight the unique nuances of our appellation, while at the same time nourishing the land with sustainable viticulture and minimally intrusive winemaking. Fruit for this luscious Zinfandel includes grapes from century-old vines in the heart of the Russian River Valley, showcasing the flavor profiles of this unique terroir. Bold fruit and violet aromas blend enticingly with spice, leading to a delightful finish with a perfect balance of acidity and tannins.”
My Take: Any label that uses the word “unique” more than once needs to have the label re-done. That aside, this is a nice, big wine with a lovely mouthfeel. Great, once again, with food; spicy Mexican, zesty ribs, or a really well-cooked steak.
My Rating: ~ Very Drinkable ~ especially at the sale price. I just checked DeLoach Vineyards web page, and it doesn’t look like they’re selling any RRV Zin right now – so if you see it in your store, grab it.
What wines are you drinking? I’d love to know!
Thanks for the recommendations. And I’m with you on the screw tops. Sometimes I opt for Pinot Noir instead of Cab simply for the easy access!