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Norm's Tasting Notes # 01-10 -PIE

January 15, 2010 - Norman Bentley
About twenty plus years ago, my wife and I had the pleasure to meet, and chat with Rodney Strong, the "Wine King" of Sonoma County, California. He was a wonderful man with both charm and wit, and at the time he owned over 2000 acres of the best Chardonnay vineyards in Sonoma. While he has been gone for several years now, his vineyards continue to produce some of the best Chardonnay Wines in the world! Just arriving in the market place are two new vintages of some of the best of those vineyards, and they bring accolades with them. The 2007 Rodney Strong Chalk Hill Estate Vineyards Chardonnay is tagged with a 90 score from the "Wine Enthusiast", and a 92 score from Mary the Chardonnay Queen!The 2006 Rodney Strong Russian River Reserve Chardonnay, which has more time in the barrel, and extra bottle aging, received a 94 score from the "Wine Spectator". It has yet to be reviewed by the Chardonnay Queen, but it won't be long, as this is her long time personal favorite Chardonnay! What do these scores mean to you? The Chalk Hill is an affordable wine with a creamy, buttery flavor finished off with toasty oak. The Reserve is a big, rich, full bodied Chardonnay with more complexity, due to its longer aging, and a little crisper finish with wonderful oak tones! Both of these wines say shellfish to me, and would be absolute heaven with Lobster or Shrimp! If this is a tough choice, then throw some lobster tails and prawns on the barbie, and serve with drawn garlic butter and fresh lemon! Oh, you may also need a baguette or two!


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