Monday, September 6, 2010

Dutch Bill Creek Chardonnay `02 (Not TJ's) $29.99 ****

I have a lot to learn. First, I don't know white wine as well as I thought.  Second, Chardonnay CAN age. This Dutch Bill Creek Chardonnay certainly did.  It was a good wine back in the day, and it held its own today - (I did have a different bottle chilled as a safety though). Even if the bottle is covered in dust, and the cork breaks when I uncork it - don't give up like I was about to.  Sometimes, you should just push the balance of the cork into the bottle with a chopstick (kudos JPH) - grab a strainer and enjoy. After I broke the fragile cork in the bottle, I was scared.  But I listened to the conventional wisdom around the table and I nervously poured a gulp then quaffed it.  I shuddered and was ready to admit defeat, but something stopped me.  It wasn't like any chardonnay I had ever tasted.

I poured a glass for S, and she said. "mmm, good, it has that old chardonnay mushroom taste" -  "Huh", I thought to myself, I have never had a chardonnay that tasted of mushrooms.  I poured out my first glass and tried again, this time swirling, and breathing, and she was right! Nice mellow, mushroom taste - it is like it was originally a buttery chardonnay and the butter flavor deepened and became more savory.  And there was NO oakiness. Even though the wine had been aged in oak, it had mellowed and simply added to the complex depth of flavor. All three of us agreed, this was a really good eight year old bottle of wine. Our non-drinking fourth corrected me, it is NOT "Duck Bill Chardonnay" - I had been calling it by the wrong name all night - oops (did I mention that I am really bad with names???)

Obviously, I don't think that you will find a bottle of `02 chardonnay on many wine shop shelves.  This review is just to say that if you have a bottle, and it has been stored correctly - don't be scared.  Chill it, pop the cork, fish out any floating cork that may be there, and enjoy!


Homemade Guacamole with chips
Corn on the cob
Fresh lobster rolls with homemade tarragon mayo

And, just because I love pretty things.  I'll leave you with today's flowers on the counter - friends, a good meal, a nice bottle of wine and cooking next to pretty flowers.... sigh... it is all good.

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