Some wines I've tried since my last post.
2012 Manincor Bianco 'Reserva delle Comtese' IGT Alto Adige, a zesty white blend from the Alto Adige region in Italy. 60% pinot bianco, 30% chardonnay, 10% sauvignon blanc. Very grapefruit-y, with a lemon note in the finish. Undertone of sweet white fruit...white peaches? Clean-tasting, quite tart. Would match well with batter-fried seafood, though that's not what I was cooking at the time.
2012 Eric Kent Chardonnay, Russian River Valley. Melon, stone fruit, something honey or caramel, citrus peel. A buttery note from the oak, not overwhelming. Starts off delicate and shows heft at the mid-palate. Long finish with a tart note. Excellent balance overall. Very aromatic, fruity and floral, which I found most enchanting about this wine.
2012 Flowers Chardonnay, Sonoma Coast. A beautiful chardonnay, very well-balanced. Citrus and stone fruit, with a long minerally finish. A buttery popcorn note. Weighty in the mouth. A classic feel to this wine; it shows all the strengths of a modern chardonnay without the pitfalls. Paired with Pacific salmon with fennel and cream.
I've been focused on California chardonnays lately. Over the years familiarity has bred boredom and I've looked farther afield for white wines. But recently I've come home for chardonnay and explored some of the smaller producers.
Flowers belongs to a group named "In Pursuit of Balance." Their aim is to produce and advocate for more restrained, balanced pinot noirs and chardonnays in California (read: no more oaky fruit bombs for these varietals). The group formed in 2011, although this trend in California wines has been going on for longer than that.