Dashwood Marlborough Chardonnay 2011 – $
From Wikipedia: Malolactic fermentation (or sometimes malolactic conversion or MLF) is a process in winemaking where tart-tasting malic acid, naturally present in grape must, is converted to softer-tasting lactic acid. Malolactic fermentation tends to create a rounder, fuller mouthfeel. It has been said that malic acid tastes of green apples. By contrast, lactic acid is richer and more buttery tasting.
I had been thinking I’d enjoy a buttery style of chardonnay about now. I‘ve been drinking a bit of bite-y sav and minerally chards lately, so I was hankering for something smoother and more-ish.
This wine was a big surprise. I only bought it cos it was a sister wine to the Sauvignon Blanc I had reviewed earlier, and wondered what it might be like. And it was well-priced.
The wine – classic chardonnay gold colour. Creamy and buttery, it is medium-bodied+, with full nose of vanilla and white peaches. The smoothness from the malolactic fermentation, not over-present, balances the fruit flavours. The return from this drop belies the price. Not flawless, but excellent value.
The Dashwood brand is owned by American wine magnate Bill Foley, along with Grove Mill, Goldwater, Vavasour and Clifford Bay. He also owns the Wharekauhau luxury lodge near where that guy who made Titanic and Avatar lives. He appears to want to produce approachable ‘value’ wines that have varietal backbone.
The wine wears a bit of age as a 2011, but it would benefit from a couple more years in the Pool Room I reckon. It’s a great candidate for an everyday cellar-filler.