Vistamar Sepia Chardonnay Reserva 2014

Mmmm, nose. Here’s why I delight in chardonnay; a wine like this. When you take your first inhalation, there’s so much of interest zipping about our sinus cavities. Exotic fruits zing about the place, along with apples and oak. There’s a kind of oily persistence, perhaps some nutty notes along with the barest hint of petroleum.

Exaggerating the rejuvenating nature of this kind of wine is difficult. Bland-oh bulk wine from Australia and California teeters on the cliff-edge of quality, reaching oh so desperately for a standard they simply cannot reach. On the other hand we have Chilean wine, which understands the limitations of fruit, vineyard, weather and – importantly – the money available to maximize all of those inputs. I like the honesty and willingness to be different.

But back to my glass. As she warms, I’m nosing canned pineapple, that lovely oily thing, some apricot. From there the palate is full, acids underlying are solid and complete with oak creating a weighty element to the finish.

C’mon, this is an adventure! No, not everything blends together seamlessly, and an unkind critic might make something of that. Tosh! Compared to a lot of oak-heavy Californian numbers I’ve tasted lately, this is a circus of flavor.