Catena White Stones Chardonnay 2009
Chardonnay from Argentina, South America
The White Stones Chardonnay has a pale green-yellow color. The nose shows an excellent mixture of delicate white flowers and white fruit aromas with pure minerality notes. The mouthfeel is elegant and fresh, showing jasmine, ripe peach and pear flavors interwoven with mineral notes. The finish is bright, with clean acidity and wonderful length.
This wine pairs well with scallops, shrimp, stonecrab and the delicately sweet flavor of halibut.
The Wine Advocate - "The genesis of the 2009 White Stones Chardonnay is from 27 rows in Lot 1 of the Adrianna Vineyard in Gualtallary. It is fermented in 225- and 500-litre French oak barrels (40% new), with 70% undergoing malolactic fermentation. It has a bouquet of light wild honey, honeysuckle and minerals that lend it a Corton-Charlemagne like complexity. The palate has a gorgeous brioche, hazelnut and toffee-tinged entry. It displays taut acidity and a harmonious, mineral-rich finish with hints of smoke and almond. Outstanding. Drink now-2025+."
International Wine Cellar - "Full, bright yellow-gold. Very ripe stone fruits, hazelnut, vanilla cream and sexy oak spices on the nose. Rich, sappy and deep, with the underlying chalky quality giving the wine superb nervosite and an impression of weightlessness. Stone fruit flavors are complicated by an enticing note of marzipan. With its precise, dry, stony finish, this very concentrated, bracing-yet-silky wine leaves the mouth feeling refreshed. The most promising Argentine chardonnay I've tasted to date, in the style of a grand cru Chablis. The White Stones and White Bones wines are Catena Zapata's new spare-no-expense chardonnays meant to be equivalent to their top vineyard-designated malbecs.
Rating: 94(+?) "
Wine Enthusiast - "Without doubt the most full and complete Chardonnay from Argentina that this critic has tried. It smells lush and toasty, with elegant apple and pear aromas. The mouthfeel is rich and balanced, while flavors of baked apple, vanilla cream and woodspice are endearing. Long and flavorful on the finish, and not overoaked."
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Bodega Catena Zapata is one of Argentina's high altitude Malbec pioneers. The Catena family began making wine in Mendoza in 1902. Nicolas Catena, third generation family vintner, was one of the first to see the potential of Mendoza's mountain vineyards for producing high quality Malbec. In 1994, he became the first Argentine to exprot a world-class bottling of Malbec under the Catena label. Nicolas is joined by his daughter, Dr. Laura Catena, in their relentless pursuit of world-class quality from the family's high altitude vineyards. Laura has done extensive work in introducing Malbec and other varietal plant selections, soil and climate analysis, and sustainable practices throughout Mendoza. Head winemaker, Alejandro Vigil, has been at Catena Zapata since 2002 and works with Laura and Nicolas to make wines that express the family's vineyards and palate. View all Catena Wines
About ArgentinaView a map of Argentina wineries (ahr-jen-TEE-nah)
Notable FactsUnlike its Chilean neighbor, Argentina's vineyards are spread out around the country. The best known region is Mendoza, almost parallel to Santiago to the west. Mendoza contains the sub-regions of Maipu (pronounced MY-pu) and San Rafael. Grape-wise, the most important white is Chardonnay, making wine similar to California's style on the variety. Another fun white grape to try is Torrontes. Almost only grown in Argentina, Torrontes makes wines that are crisp, aromatic and easy-drinking. Some of the best versions of this wine come from the northern region of Salta, with very high altitude vineyards. As for the reds, Cabernet Sauvignon is the main grape for many wines leaving the country, but Malbec, the grape Argentinians like to call their own, makes very distinctive wines that are structured, dense and velvety. Many more varieties happily grow in the country, but for export, and consistent quality, these are the primary grapes.
About South AmericaRelated Links:
Young, organically farmed Carmenère at Chile's De Martino estate vineyard
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.
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