Le Chardonnay Nouveau est arrivé!

That’s right — Chardonnay Nouveau, not Beaujolais Nouveau.

fall, there is an unbelievable (and unwarranted) amount of hype
surrounding Beaujolais Nouveau, the ubiquitous red wine made from Gamay
in the Beaujolais region of France that is sold almost as soon as it’s
done fermenting. It’s marketed well — very well — as a ‘fresh’ wine
and we’ll soon seen bottles in all of our wine shops. Some people even
consider it the perfect Thanksgiving wine.

I don’t care for
the stuff and it’s been years since I made my friends and family drink
it along side turkey and stuffing. I’d much rather drink Macari
Vineyards’ 2006 Early Wine — a Chardonnay Nouveau that I look forward
to every year.

And, it’s super fresh. The Chardonnay grapes
were picked on September 17, the wine bottled October 16 and the final
product released on October 23.

Helmut Gangl, an Austrian
native who is one of Macari Vineyards’ part-time winemakers, created
this wine a few years ago, but the newest rendition is by far the best.
Rather than call it Chardonnay Nouveau, Gangl chose Early Wine,
reminiscent of Jungwein (‘young wine’) from his homeland.

vintages — especially the 2005 bottling — had definite sweetness, but
the 2006 is bone dry, crisp and delicious. A super-pale yellow in the glass, tiny
bubbles cling to the inside of the glass. The nose is clean, bright and
fresh with crisp apple, pear and lime aromas that are accented by faint
mineral notes. A burst of lively pear, green apple and lime flavor
greets the palate with terrific acidity and a surprisingly long finish.

If you want to talk perfect for Thanksgiving, talk about this
wine, which can also stand in for Riesling with spicy Chinese, Thai or
even Mexican fare.

(This review was originally published on Appellation America)