By Lenn Thompson, Editor-in-Chief
My lukewarm feelings towards barrel-fermented chardonnay are well documented, but that doesn't mean I can't appreciate the qualities that a cool growing climate bring to the category.
Lucas Vineyards 2008 Chardonnay ($14) shows great balance from start to finish, which is something worth noting in any wine.
The nose is decidedly oak-inflected with toasted marshmallows and hazelnuts layered with pineapple, mango, roasted apple fruit aromas.
Medium-bodied with a bright, fresh attack that brings sweet apple and pineapple fruit, this wine turns creamy and vanilla-tinged on the mid-palate before getting nutty as it ends on a medium-length finish.
It's not something I'd drink every day, but there are truckloads of New York chardonnay -- many more expensive -- that don't show well-balanced, integrated acidity that this one does. And at $14, it's a good value.
I'll even admit to having a glass of this at the end of a recent flight of Finger Lakes whites.
Producer: Lucas Vineyards
AVA: Finger Lakes
Rating: (2.5 out of 5 | Average-to-Very Good)