Friday, March 09, 2007

Another winner from Coppola - 2005 Diamond Label Chardonnay

I really really hope that Francis Coppola doesn't become the Earnest and Julio Gallo of the 21st century. And I'm not trying to be particularly derrogatory to Gallo -- their wines have improved considerably over the last decade. What I mean is that I hope that the popularity and frequency of consumption of the Coppola wines (as well as their affordability) won't make them seem commonplace. Because they are anything but commonplace.

As you may recall, I've written about the excellent Diamond Label Claret several times. (It's one of my favorite reds, and by far my favorite moderately priced red). But until now I hadn't tried the Chardonnay. To celebrate the renovation of my kitchen, I broke out a bottle of the 2005 Diamond Label Chardonnay to share with my parents (you remember them, they started out as Manishewitz drinkers, but they've been making a lot of progress.)

I served it well chilled, which suited this wine. I was at first surprised by the color. A very dark yellow-gold... much darker than most chards I'd had. The aroma was floral and citrus. The taste was very smooth, with hints of apple, vanilla, and pear, and an essence of wildflowers. Think a sunny, flower-covered field on a clear Spring day -- that's the feel of this wine.

We had it with various small plates of appetizers: marinated artichokes, garlic hummus, pita toasts, chickpea salad, horseradish chedder, olives, and roasted red pepper and artichoke tapanade. Possibly the flavors of the appetizers were a little too bold for a chardonnay. Next time I think I'll enjoy it with crackers and fruit or something less zingy. It would pair well with grilled chicken and salads. I can see this being a fine spring/summer staple. Highly recommended.

On another note... I stumbled across a fellow blogger's post about Coppola wines that was just hilarious. Take a look.


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