Tried a few things at the Saturday afternoon tasting at Arrow. Both quite nice.
Neyers Chardonnay (2011) Carneros, California – $30
Neyers uses all-natural winemaking, including indigenous yeast and malo-lactic bacteria. Their Chardonnay is made from a small-berried breed that results in creamier, lusher fruit.
Color: golden yellow.
Aroma: fresh apple, cream, and pineapple.
Taste: low oak and good acidity, this has a full body without being overwhelmed by heavy, flabby butter or oak. The taste profile is balanced between apple, pear, and some tropical fruit.
A well-made bottle, with a clean, fresh feel that is very well-suited to food.
Domaine Faury Vielles Vignes (2011) St. Joseph, France – $39
Domaine Faury is a Syrah producer from the Northern Rhone. The AOC rules allow up to 10% of the white Roussanne or Marsanne grapes to be added, but the Vielles Vignes (‘old vine’) bottling is pure Syrah. The wine region dates back centuries – Louis XII had a vineyard there, and the wine was mentioned in Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables. This is a fresh, fruity Syrah that sees just a touch of oak aging. It’s meant to be drunk young, while the neighboring wines of Hermitage and Cote Rotie are aging.
Color: deep, full purple.
Aroma: big fresh fruit, including blueberry, with a hint of fruit liqueur.
Taste: quite French; this has loads of fruit, just a little bit of pepper, and medium tannins. You won’t mistake this for an Australian Shiraz.
Very good stuff.