Sunday, March 16, 2008

2002 Paul Hobbs Chardonnay Russian River Valley - $40

I have been sitting on this baby for a while and have read recently in CellarTracker that this wine is peaking.

Color: Golden Yellow, in a strong firm way. Surprisingly, it’s not as dark as I’d expect from a Chardonnay of this age.

Nose: Aromas of lemon oil and pear, with a touch of mineral and spice.

Palate: Pear and spice greet the palate up front and carry through the mid-palate where it mingles with vanilla. A slight, but very strong note of honeysuckle explodes on the finish. The wine ends with a refreshing dose of acidity.

The is the second oldest California Chardonnay I have had, I had a 2001 Cakebread reserve a few months back that had peaked and was a shadow of its younger self. This wine however is less intense than at release but more complex and noble in its older stage of life. I pulled it from the cellar yesterday as it’s been in the back of my mind to drink up. We picked up some scallops to eat for dinner and some triple cream cheese. I am typing this up in the kitchen as Lisa is cooking away on the scallops. The triple cream cheese, which most pair especially with Champagne or Chardonnay wines, was a great pairing. The triple cream cow’s milk we chose was called L’Explorateur, named after our first satellite. From France, this has a soft edible rind, and is VERY rich. Similar to Brie, but better fans of Brie should pick some up ASAP! The texture is more like soft butter or cream cheese. Brie tends to be softer and gooier, especially after being out of the fridge for a while. One of the creamiest I have come across, this cheese is excellent. The cheese is from Petit Morin in France and received its name from the first United States satellite in space, Explorer I, which launched in the 1950s shortly before the cheese was developed. Great with the wine, the bubbles from champagne and the texture they’d add I feel would be a better pairing.


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