Sunday, May 24, 2015

Wine Review: Marina Cvetic 2011 Chardonnay

Marina Cvetic 2011 Chardonnay

Holy hell, the warmer weather is in full effect! You can even see the trellis for my tomatoes right behind the bottle of this wine! I'm so goddamn excited I can't even contain myself! The winter was such a bastard that I would rather move to a state full of maniacs, like Florida, than deal with that crap again! But I won't have to worry about that threat for at least another four months... so let's drink some white wine and forget our worries!

You may not see many Chardonnay's from Italy but they are certainly being made at top quality. The same goes for Merlot, actually. Italian Chardonnay and Merlot are pretty great but they're a tough sell to American consumers. People love their Italian wine... when they're looking for Italian wine. When they're looking for a varietal they associate with California... not so much. That's stupid. Good wine is good wine.

So Marina Cvetic has been presented to me many times in its different forms and I've always just shrugged it off. The Montepulciano d'Abruzzo I always feel is overpriced, while I'm standing there surrounded by my peers that feel it exceeds all others. The Trebbiano d'Abruzzo is, to put it lightly, a Trebbiano. The reputation and love of the brand has always been lost on me and I'm not sure why. Maybe I'm wrong about those like I've been wrong about so many other things in my life.

But for me their Chardonnay is a completely different story. This is an Italian Chardonnay from Abruzzo and it's done in the style that I think Chardonnay should always be done regardless of where it's from. Except for Chablis. Chablis can get away with it. And a few other exceptions.

Listen, people like their wine the way they like it and above all other styles and varietals, I've found that Chardonnay drinkers can be real Chardonn-asses. Everybody is a Goldilocks with Chardonnay and the oak level has to be just right or else it's offensive to their very existence. Myself: I want oak and lots of it.

The Marina Cvetic isn't an oak bomb but the oak walks in through the door with its arm around the wine, claiming what is his. I like that. It was fermented in new oak and aged on the lees in French oak for 18 months. 100% Chardonnay.

The nose is all about vanilla, buttered biscuit, brown sugar, banana peel and honeydew melon. I can't even take a whiff of this wine without tilting my head back and releasing a curse word. It's exactly what makes me excited about a Chardonnay upon first inhalation.

Vanilla continues on the palate but the flavor gets more fruity and tart than the aroma. The honeydew melon is exchanged for plum, baked apple and pineapple. The buttered biscuit is replaced by savory soy. The mouthfeel is super smooth and the body is about as heavy as Thor's hammer. The finish leaves you with baking spices and baked apple.

One of the advantages of a killer wine of a certain varietal and/or a style coming from a place you don't expect is the price. I've had California Chardonnay done in the same style and of the same quality that is double (and more than double) the price of this one.

You need to remember this wine and buy at the very first chance you get. This Chardonnay is a champion and you'll have a tough time finding a contender.

Price: $22
Rating: 5/5 = Highly Recommended.
(what does that mean?)

The bottle used was supplied free of charge for the purpose of this unpaid review. To have your wine reviewed follow this link.
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