Thursday, May 29, 2014

Report from ... World Chardonnay Day Tasting - May 22, 2014

Due to conflicts on my schedule I could not make the World Chardonnay Tasting held at Allen's on the Danforth ... I asked fellow writer and friend Dean Tudor to go in my stead, for those who don't know Dean, he is "food and wine writer of reference tools since 1969. Professor Emeritus of Journalism, Ryerson University, Toronto, and professional wine writer." - here is his take and reaction from the day:

The Date and Time:  Thursday, May 22, 2014 2Pm to 5PM
The Event:  World Chardonnay Day
The Venue:  Allen's (patio)
The Target Audience:  wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue:  domestic wines from the wineries, imports via agency licensee programmes.
The Quote/Background:  this is a sort of preview of the Rebirth of Cool Climate Chardonnay – one world, one grape, one weekend (July 18-20, 2014). Tickets are available at; the event is in Niagara. 55 winemakers will be present, as well as chefs and food.

The Wines:

**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Southbrook Whimsy! “Damy” Chardonnay 2011 VQA Niagara biodynamic
-Speck Family Reserve Chardonnay 2010 VQA Niagara
-Jean Leon Vinya Gigi Chardonnay 2012 Spain
-Sumaridge Chardonnay 2011 South Africa [my fave]
-Creation Wine Estate Chardonnay 2012 South Africa
-Flat Rock Chardonnay Rusty Shed 2011 VQA Niagara
-13th Street Sandstone Vineyard Chardonnay 2010 VQA Niagara
-Napa Cambria Chardonnay 2012 Katherine's Vineyard Santa Maria Valley California
-Murphy-Goode Chardonnay 2012 Santa Barbara
-Cave Spring CSV Chardonnay 2011 VQA Niagara
-Cave Spring Estate Chardonnay 2012 VQA Niagara
-Chateau des Charmes Chardonnay 2012 Paul Bosc Vineyard VQA Niagara

***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Trivento Golden Reserve Chardonnay 2012 Mendoza
-Concha y Toro Marques de Casa Concha Chardonnay 2012 Chile
-Laroche Chablis St. Martin [Chardonnay]
-Southbrook Triomphe Chardonnay Organic 2012 VQA Niagara
-Southbrook Poetica Chardonnay Biodynamic 2011 VQA Niagara
-Sperling Vineyards Estate Bottled Chardonnay 2012 VQA Okanagan
-Flat Rock Estate Chardonnay 2010 VQA Niagara
-Catena Chardonnay Mendoza
-Catena Alta Chardonnay Mendoza
-13th Street June's Vineyard Chardonnay 2012 VQA Niagara
-Torres Milmanda Chardonnay 2011 Spain
-Jean Leon 3055 Chardonnay 2013 Spain
-Torres Gran Vina Sol [Chardonnay] 2012 Spain
-Gerard Bertrand Domaine de l'Aigle Chardonnay 2011 Limoux
-Normal Hardie County Chardonnay 2012 VQA PEC
-Normal Hardie Niagara Chardonnay 2012 VQA Niagara
-Clos du Bois Calcaire Chardonnay 2011 California
-PlumpJack “Adaptation” Chardonnay 2011 California
-Malivoire Small Lot Chardonnay 2012 VQA Niagara
-Malivoire Mottiar Chardonnay 2011 VQA Niagara
-Bachelder Chardonnay 2011 VQA Niagara
-Bachelder Chardonnay 2012 VQA Niagara

*** GOOD -- Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Grant Burge Summers Chardonnay 2012 Australia
-The Dreaming Tree Chardonnay 2012 California
-Robert Mondavi Private Selection Chardonnay 2010
-Robert Mondavi Chardonnay 2012
-Kim Crawford Unoaked Chardonnay 2013 New Zealand
-Flat Rock Chardonnay Unplugged 2012 VQA Niagara
-Malivoire Moira Vineyard Chardonnay 2010 VQA Niagara
-Chateau des Charmes Chardonnay Musque 2012 VQA Niagara

The rest of the picture ...
The Food: nothing for awhile, then crackers and finally some salmon canapes.

The Downside: for awhile, there was no list of wines. There were also additions and withdrawals, for “cool” also means “laid back”.

The Upside: There were 21 domestic and 21 imported wines (mostly New World) poured

The Contact Person:

The Event’s Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 87

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