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Howie Hart


The Hart of Buffalo




Thu Mar 23, 2006 5:13 pm


Niagara Falls, NY

Two very different local Chardonnays

by Howie Hart » Sun Feb 16, 2014 7:59 am

A few weeks ago, for my son's birthday, I put together a special dinner that included Maine Clam Chowder and Crab-stuffed Trout. Everyone I talked to recommended Chardonnay as the best pairing for the trout, so I put these two into the queue, as there were 8 people for dinner. As dinner was being served, I asked who wanted wine and I only got one response for "something without oak". So, I opened one of my 2011 Rieslings and the Chards remained in the queue until more recently.
2009 Arrowhead Springs Reserve Chardonnay – Estate – Niagara Escarpment – 13.1% abv. Natural cork. Light amber with generous nose oak and butter. Tasting alone, this was more reminiscent of a good quality Cal Chard, with oak tannin. My initial impression was that perhaps this should age a few more years for the tannins to soften. However, when paired with roast chicken, brown rice and mixed vegetables, the tannins provided a good complement to the chicken skin and it worked quite well with the dinner.
2010 Schulze Vineyards Chardonnay Reserve – New York State – 11.5% abv. Composite cork. While the winery is in Niagara County, I'm not sure where the grapes were sourced from. Medium straw color. Good nose of fruit – apple & peach. A very slight spritz appeared in the glass. A full, long finish with very refreshing acidity that cleansed the palate nicely between bites of Fettuccine Alfredo (with home made pasta).
Two very different approaches to the same grape, from two very different growing seasons – both enjoyable and complemented the food nicely.
Chico - Hey! This Bottle is empty!
Groucho - That's because it's dry Champagne.

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