Chardonnays––like you (and me and pretty much everyone else)––are simply misunderstood. Of course, there’s the sickly sweet Chard that your great aunt drinks on ice from an opaque plastic cup on her front porch at eleven o’clock in the morning, but there are also plenty that won’t necessarily slap you in the face with butter and oak (unless you enjoy that, which is fine too).
I look fondly upon the memory of my first time tasting a Chardonnay that I actually liked. It was Long Meadow Ranch’s 2016 Anderson Valley Chardonnay, and it embraced and took hold of me so greatly that I forgot all about my impostor syndrome and the anxiety induced by being around other people at the tasting event. The wine was pale lemon-gold, light-bodied, bright, crisp, dry, balanced, marshmallowy, lemon curd-y, fennel-y and full of minerality layered with the slightest hint of baking spice. And it clicked: lightly-oaked cool climate Chards are objectively Very Good™, which is exactly why I opened one at lunchtime yesterday after having waited in the cold and rain to vote in this year’s presidential election.
The 2019 Post & Beam Napa Valley Chardonnay and its juicy acidity washed away my crippling 2020 angst like water over a rocky riverbed; I downed two glasses alongside half of a wheel of Cowgirl Creamery’s Mt Tam triple-crème cow’s milk cheese and a handful of sliced Journeyman finocchiona salami before I had no other choice but to check myself.
Anyway, here are three delicious Chards to cry into this election season because we’re all doomed and nothing matters anymore!
Sad Wine Girl