Au Contraire Russian River Chardonnay 2013
Citrus and tree fruits are complemented by a hint of brioche and toast. A round, elegant mouth feel with perfect balance leads to a lingering finish with a touch of minerality.
The first US brand developed by the Taub family, owners of leading importer Palm Bay International, Au Contraire represents the family’s return to their roots in the California wine business. This charming French expression, Au Contraire, was used often by Palm Bay’s beloved founder David S. Taub, usually preceding an insight that took a turn from conventional wisdom. President & CEO Marc D. Taub fittingly adopted his father’s favorite saying to embody a new project that takes Palm Bay in a somewhat unexpected and exciting direction: domestic wines.
Au Contraire wines are crafted for those who aim to live life to the fullest, who revel in turning the every day ordinary into something extraordinary. Our wines celebrate the spirit of taking on any challenge in life, no matter how insurmountable it may seem. This irresistible joie de vivre is artfully embodied on each Au Contraire label with a playful illustration that turns expectations on their heads
After decades of bringing gems from around the globe to American consumers, Au Contraire from the Taub Family Vineyards selections, is the domestic portfolio designed to complement Palm Bay’s renowned import selection, and exemplify a commitment to developing outstanding wines from key California appellations.
These expressive wines from top vineyards in Russian River Valley, Carneros and the Sonoma Coast – including Dutton Ranch and Lawler Vineyard. Outstanding quality is guaranteed by legendary California enologist Tom Hinde and his experienced team of viticulturists and winemakers. Tom’s experience in California winemaking is considerable. He is involved in every aspect of the growing and winemaking process.
A standout region for its decidedly Californian take on Burgundian varieties, the Russian River Valley is named for the eponymous river that flows through it. While there are warm pockets of the AVA, it is mostly a cool-climate growing region thanks to breezes and fog from the nearby Pacific Ocean.
Chardonnay and Pinot Noir reign supreme in Russian River, with the best examples demonstrating a unique combination of richness and restraint. The cool weather makes Russian River an ideal AVA for sparkling wine production, utilizing the aforementioned varieties. Zinfandel also performs exceptionally well here. Within the Russian River Valley lie the smaller appellations of Chalk Hill and Green Valley. The former, farther from the ocean, is relatively warm, with a focus on red and white Bordeaux varieties. The latter is the coolest, foggiest parcel of the Russian River Valley and is responsible for outstanding Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.