A great review of Matchbook Old Head Chardonnay from TX Wine Lover. Following is an excerpt of the review.
Texas Wine Lover
Review of Matchbook Old Head Chardonnay 2015
by Jeremy Wilson
Published on October 13, 2016
“This wine is 100% estate fruit, which means grown, produced, cellared, and bottled within the AVA. It is not an easy task to achieve with large production, but the Giguiere family is committed to mostly all estate grown grapes, and integrity in labeling. The wine is comprised of six different clones of Chardonnay (grown in the Dunnigan Hills AVA east of Napa Valley), to increase complexity. All fruit was harvested at night, and brought in before sunrise to ensure cool, rested grapes were crushed. A cocktail of compatible yeasts were utilized to ferment the wine. Clone 809 was fermented alone in steel tanks to retain its muscat character, while the remaining five clones were fermented and aged in French, American, and Hungarian oak barrels. It was aged on the lees for eight months, performing weekly battonage (stirring).
The wine shows its true color as it pours into the glass a light straw with a golden rim. The nose is complex from the get-go offering notes of lemon tarts, honeydew, and freshly peeled lemon rinds. The palate is driven by citrus and butter. Nuances of lemon candy, limes, cantaloupe, honeydew, and buttered toast send the senses into overdrive. The mouthfeel is full and textural; there is nothing boring about this wine.
Matchbook Old Head Chardonnay, 2015 vintage
Appellation: California, Dunnigan Hills AVA
Grape varieties: 100% Chardonnay
Barrels: 78% 2-5 year old barrels, 22% new oak barrels
Clarity/brightness: Clear/bright with no detectable flaws, and no evidence of gas or sediment
Finish: Medium plus
Alcohol by volume: 13.9%
Retail price: $15.00 at the time of review
Cases produced: 48,000
This bottle of Old Head (old head meaning used oak barrels) Chardonnay is impressive for the price. It competes with many others in the $15-20 price range, but with a bit more sophistication and elegance than some. It is not driven by malolactic fermentation, as the buttery aspect is minimal and well balanced. It is always nice to taste the fruit instead of oak and butter with a north coast California Chardonnay.”
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