On The New England Wine Trail
Today’s stop along the New England wine trail is Chamard Vineyards, located in Clinton, Connecticut. The state of Connecticut is home to 19 wineries joined by the Connecticut Wine Trail. Situated in close proximity to the Long Island Sound on the Connecticut shoreline, the microclimate is ideal for growing European grapes. Famous for Chardonnay and voted “Best Wine” for 11 years running by Connecticut Magazine, Chamard also grows and bottles several other varieties. The vineyard is made up of 20 acres of established vines, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir, Merlot, and of course, Chardonnay.
I was excited to open their signature wine, the 2004 Estate Reserve Chardonnay. The bottle retails for $17.99 and is available for purchase from their website. The Chard comes in at 12.5% alcohol. Served at room temperature, the wine displayed a beautiful golden color in the glass. On the nose, I picked up nice tropical fruit flavors and melon. On the palate, the wine revealed tropical fruit, pineapple, and well-integrated oak. A creamy mouth feel with low acidity, although the finish was shorter than expected.
I honestly believe if this wine was placed alongside higher priced California Chardonnay and White Burgundy wines in a blind tasting, this Connecticut Chardonnay would do surprisingly well. I was very impressed. In fact, I might just have to locate another bottle and see if my theory proves correct. I’m excited to try Chamard’s other selections, especially their unoaked Chardonnay to compare and contrast.
In summary, Chamard understands Chardonnay. It’s not overdone with oak and butter, but instead finds a nice balance between California and Burgundian Chardonnays.
Next time you plan a trip to New England, be sure to visit Chamard Vineyards, and tell them The Other 46 sent you.
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