Clos La Chance - 2005 Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay

Clos La Chance releases wines in three tiers and designations. Throughout this week I'll look at a total of four wines, two from the Hummingbird Series and two from the Estate Series. Close La Chance will also be featured again on this blog at the end of April during Petite Sirah Week. Today's wine is one of several Chardonnays Clos La Chance produces. A couple of them are Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnayvineyard designate wines (part of the Special Selections Series). The 2005 Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay is part of their Estate Series. Just under 3,500 cases were produced and the suggested retail price is $20. 20% of the wine spent 10 months in new French oak with the remainder in either 1 year oak (30%) or neutral (French & American) oak.

The nose of this Chardonnay presents an abundance of pear and pineapple alongside subtler spice notes.  Pear comes out in droves with the first sip. That carries through the creamy, mouth-filling mid-palate which also showcases more prominent spice notes. The finish has hints of vanilla, apple pie spices and a light minerality.

This Chardonnay has excellent varietal character, and good acidity. It features enough oak to offer significant complexity in it's price cetegory but it's never obtrusive to the fruit. This wine tastes incredibly fresh and springlike.

For $20 this wine is an excellent value. It puts me in a mind of some of the Chardonnays I enjoy year in and year out. With 3,500 cases out there it should be fairly easy to locate. If you like well made Chardonnay, that actually tastes like Chardonnay, with good complexity, this is definitely one to try.

Coming tomorrow: Clos La Chance, Buff-Bellied Zinfandel

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