Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Alba Vineyards Estate Reserve Chardonnay 2010 (NJ)



I am a huge fan of Alba Raspberry dessert wine. the wine received a 91 from Wine Specator, and is easily one of the best dessert Tines in the United States...period. End of discussion. so I was thrilled, when I showed up at 5pm at Alba Vineyards the other day, after a long day, and was able to buy two cases (some for me, some for friends, and some for a wine dinner).

And let's be honest, I am a New Jersey boy from way back, and I have a soft spot for Jersey wines. And each year there are more and more good ones. And Alba is one of the better and more consistent producers in the state...nd some of the most widely distributed. And with good reason. Here's a list of recent scores:



But while I was at Alba I knew I needed some wine for a dinner I was going to. I was told to bring a white, but with no further profile. What to do? Well, I believe in local, so you knew where my head was going.



Alba Vineyards is nestled in the Village of Finesville, New Jersey. A great deal has changed here in the last twenty years. They have created a recognizable style of wine making which borrows from the past, looks to the future, and emulates the finest wineries in the world. Alba has firm belief in minimal-impact, renewable viticulture, and follows through to the store shelf.



Built in 1805, their historic barn now houses their winery and tasting room, as well as the Musconetcong Art Gallery. Within the old stone walls, the aroma of fermenting and aging wine fills the air. Remarkable care was taken in converting the 190-year-old structure into a modern, efficient winemaking facility. The character of the limestone walls and old oak beam framing has not been lost with the installation of modern equipment; in fact, the new lighting system serves to reveal the inherent beauty of the stonework as never before.



Located in the oldest part of the building, their tasting room also serves as their showroom, where our complete selection of wines, produced here on the premises, as well as gift items, etc.



The Red Raspberry is fantastic! Produced entirely from whole red raspberries, the skins sit in the wine for twenty days to maximize the fresh berry character. The wine is finished sweet, with a slight tart edge to provide a rich berry experience without a cloying, syrupy finish. Their winemaker made this wine for the first time in 1983, and it has since received numerous regional, national, and international awards, most recently scoring a gold medal in the World Wine Competition and a double-gold medal in the Tasters’ Guild International Competition (2006).

MEDAL WINNING WINE ('11)
GOLD
2011 PACIFIC RIM WINE COMPETITION

SILVER
2011 FINGER LAKES INTERNATIONAL WINE COMPETITION
2011 SAN DIEGO INTERNATIONAL WINE COMPETITION
2011 TASTERS GUILD INTERNATIONAL WINE COMPETITION
2011 NEW JERSEY WINE COMPETITION

BRONZE
2011 SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE WINE COMPETITION

I have served this wine to friends, family, and other wine drinkers over the years, and it never fails to impress. Amazing!



The 2010 Estate Reserve Chardonnay is made from Dijon clones planted in high density on a southern facing hillside enriched with natural limestone. The wine was aged in the French Oak barrels where it completed malolactic fermentation. Granny Smith apple, hints of pear and tropical fruits, blended with a hint of vanilla and spice round out the nose. The apples and pears come through on the palate, followed by a lovely, creamy texture, and a refreshing finish. The acidity is nicely balanced with the fruit. An elegant, complex wine. It is absolutely lovely. One of the best Chardonnays in New Jersey, and an easy competitor for anywhere else on the east coast. This is an absolutely surprising and lovely wine!

Tastings.com: 91 Points, Gold Medal, Best Buy
“Alba’s 2010 Estate Reserve Chardonnay reflects the best of that vintage.”

Alba Vineyards was absolutely a fantastic visit. I am sorry I couldn't have gotten there a little sooner and done a more full tasting, but they stayed open just to accommodate me.

Thanks folks! And a great pair of wines...they were a hit last night at the Hamilton Grill in Lambertville! Enjoy!