Mer Soleil Website
Total Wine & More, $19.99
Aaron: This is a great bottle, especially if you like rich buttery chardonnays. A little white strawberry and peaches found their way through a fruit-crowded nose. I noticed mild, buttered popcorn and some bits of citrus fruit but the overpowering flavor is rich, nutty vanilla. After a few moments your pallet is flooded with cashew butter and streaks of vanilla beans. This has some sugarcane but isn’t “sweet”, definitely a worthwhile bottle. 90 points
Teri: Citrus and apple on the nose with bright and fruity flavors overall. I tasted banana, caramel, vanilla, and lemongrass. Long beautiful finish. A wonderful bottle and unique to give/share with those who are unfamiliar with unoaked chardonnays. A bottle for those who like bright fruit flavors in their wines. 90 points
See our opinion on the 2012 vintage.
Wine of the Month Club, January 2015, $20 Kimmel Vineyards Website, $19
Aaron: There were tons of fruit and kiwi on this tropical chard. Melon and pineapple on the nose make it much brighter than I would expect while some crisp apples and peach were a bit tart. The flavor is very different than the nose (though I like the nose more) and features more stones and bitter, tiny thorns. 88 points
Teri: I normally love unoaked chardonnays, but this one just didn’t sit right with me. I agree with Aaron, the smell is delightful (tropical fruits and pineapple) but the taste just didn’t follow. Overall the flavor is light, acidic, and crisp but has a tart and slightly bitter undertone. Hints of lemon mixed with some green apple and a hint of peach is refreshing but with a slight pucker. 87 points from me. The tannins and the tartness aren’t quite right for a higher rating on this one.
Total Wine & More, $5.99
Aaron: This features a very light nose with just some subtle lemon. The flavor was nice, a little bitter but good and overall more refreshing than full. I could have used a little more “something”. 88 points
Teri: I found it funny that I actually tasted oak on in this wine, even though it is an unoaked chardonnay. Overall this bottle is pretty standard with nothing really standing out. Not much smell and a general, buttery, lemon flavor that lingers into a medium finish (that to me tasted a little oaky). This is a standard bottle that makes a nice quick grab and go for dinner parties or an evening in. 87 points
Joel Gott Website,
Total Wine & More, $13.99
Joel Gott Chard Fact Sheet
Aaron: A cold metal and stone engulfed apricots on the nose of this very buttery wine. Flavors of green leaves and light berries interacted in the smooth creaminess and the medium body made this pleasant though not overly spectacular. 89 points
Teri: This unoked Chardonnay has the pleasant smell of buttery crackers matching the buttery lemon-grass and green apple flavors in the bottle. The finish is medium in length and creates a lasting mineral rich fruit flavor. 90 points