Mon 8 Feb 2010
Forty percent of the wine is fermented in barrels, 60 percent in stainless steel tanks; after fermentation, the wine ages eight months in a combination of half Hungarian oak barrels, 40 percent American oak and 10 percent French oak; only 25 percent of the barrels are new. Obviously a great deal of thought went into this process and these proportions — Waterbrook winemaker is John Freeman — and I have to say that in 25 years and seven months of writing about wine, I don’t recall ever encountering this scenario before. Perhaps it contributes to the wine’s seductive balance and harmony, its gentle spiciness and lovely resonance. Oh, there’s 1.5 percent sauvignon blanc in the wine, too, a device that I assume nudges up the pronounced floral element.
Floral the Waterbrook Chardonnay 2007 certainly is, with notes of honeysuckle and jasmine wreathed around scents of green apple, grapefruit and orange rind and a middle tone of limestone. This is a juicy chardonnay, ripe with classic pineapple-grapefruit flavors shot through with mango and touches of baking spice and lightly buttered toast, these myriad effects knitted by vibrant acidity and a finish of damp stones. Perfectly charming. Very Good+. About $15.
A sample for review.