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Wines That Rock Woodstock Chardonnay 2012
Inspired by the legendary music and message of Woodstock--celebrating community, individual expression, and a break with the past—Winemaker Mark Beaman created a "naked" style of Chardonnay emphasizing the grape's pure fruit character and the land it was grown on.
About the Producers
Mendocino Wine Co. is dedicated to responsible land stewardship, sustainable viticulture and green business practices that yield superior wines while protecting the environment and supporting local farmers. These goals are reflected in the winery's E3 action plan: "...environmental responsibility, economic viability and social equity." Envisioning the wine industry as a model for all of agriculture, the partners lead by example. The award-winning brands produced by the winery include: Parducci Wine Cellars, Paul Dolan Vineyards and now Wines That Rock. In the spring of 2007, Mendocino Wine Co. became the first winery in the United States to achieve carbon neutral status. In recognition of their leadership, the State of California has twice (2007 & 2009) awarded Mendocino Wine Co. with the Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Award (GEELA), California's highest environmental honor.
A large and diverse appellation within California’s North Coast AVA, Mendocino is home to several smaller sub-regions—most notably the Anderson Valley. This scenic region, with rolling hills covered in redwood forests as well as vineyards, is one of the world’s top producers of certified organically-grown grapes. Due to wide geographical and climatic variation, a vast array of wine styles can be found here.
One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.
In the Glass
When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.
Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based sauces.
Since the 1990s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has begun to swing in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.