Club Write-ups

Everything But Red
March 2024

Tim's Wine Market

This year I have started teaching a masterclass each month on one collectable category of wine. I started in January with White Burgundy as the arriving 2022’s are a magnificent vintage. Coincidentally, the historic drop in sales of California wineries has prompted market visits by many winemakers eager to show their wines after several years of focusing almost exclusively on direct-to-consumer sales. To me most of these visits by Cabernet-centric producers are arduous, as they explain how important terroir in their process while pitching wines that exceed 15% alcohol. I am firm believer that high alcohol and over-extraction, two hallmarks of California Cab, homogenize wines and trounce terroir. However, to my surprise I have been very impressed with many Chardonnays. This spurred a thesis that domestic Chardonnays could be better values than White Burgundy. After all, there are many really good examples for around $50, but in Burgundy the most that buys you is good Bourgogne, certainly not elite level Puligny, Chassagne or Meursault. So I dug through my notes and have selected three excellent examples of domestic Chardonnay reminiscent of the appellations mentioned above. I hope you enjoy this exercise and these selections are as eye opening as I have found them to be. 

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Irvine & Roberts Estate Chardonnay 2021

Eden Rift Estate Chardonnay 2018

Matthiasson Chardonnay 2022