Kevin O'leary Unoaked Chardonnay 2011, Niagara Peninsula
Critic Reviews (2)
Community Reviews (2)
Un-oaked Chardonnay is tricky business. Without wood to add a little eyeliner or blush the wine really has to rely on site to build complexity and if the site is a soft one the wine can look a little, well, soft in character. The 2011 Kevin O’Leary has done a nice job without oak, but with and unexpected addition of 10% Sauvignon Blanc. The unlikely partner is a welcome addition and the two grapes work well here. The wine showcases aromas of talc, marshmallow, lemon tarts and sweet green apple. The palate is nicely concentrated with a briny edge and firm acids. I feel the Sauvignon Blanc adds a lift to the wine adding layers of celery salt and a gentle savory cabbage note. A very solid wine, especially for the price, and perfect for steamed shell fish. Well done.
2011 O'Leary Unoaked Chardonnay: Yes. That Kevin O’Leary. “Honest and Direct” as the label states, but also a somewhat unlikeable fellow. I really didn’t want to like this wine, but when Brian Schmidt from Vineland Estates is the winemaker, it makes it very challenging to not like a wine. As Vineland has their own very successful Unoaked Chardonnay, Brian explained that they needed this one to be different. They achieved this by leaving the wine in contact with, and frequently stirring the lees. So while this wine exhibits crisp fruit like ripe green apples and lemon-lime of the Vineland’s ow
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