High-end, ageable Chardonnay in the United States can often mean a big wine that’s high in both alcohol and flavors of toasted oak, which is a style that appeals to some, but not all. A much more agreeable style of Chardonnay can be found in its ancestral home of Burgundy, and lucky for you, it’s a style that is mimicked to perfection in Oregon, with Stoller Vineyards Reserve Chardonnay a fantastic example.
Made from the Dijon Chardonnay clone — which, for most of us out there who have no idea what this means is the OG of French Chardonnay clones — the wine delivers aromas of pear, baked apples, and citrus. It’s crushed and then barrel fermented in French oak, which rounds out the wine. Fermenting in a barrel allows a bit of oxygen to sneak in through the wood, creating a smoother flavor, as opposed to the bright crispness you’d get if the wine were fermented in stainless steel.
In the glass the wine pours a golden yellow, immediately giving off those aromas of baked apple and pear. On the palate the wine is clean with a nice amount of acidity rounded out with a bit of nuttiness on the finish. While fermented in oak, the wine isn’t heavy like many Cali Chards can be. It’s a great choice for anyone looking for a quality glass of white wine. Drink it now or let it age for a few years. It’s only going to improve.