The Chapel Hill Unoaked Chardonnay has been around for 21 years and has always been a good, solid and respectable drop. However, let's be honest, if you got 100 chardonnay lovers in a room and said hands up who prefers unaoked chardonnay to those with some form of oak, I'd bet a hogshead full of loose change less than 10 people would put their hand up!
The only problem is that so many chardonnays go a bit overboard on the oak... no pun intended.
Enter the 2011 Chapel Hill Chardonnay. It has a light colour that is a very pale, metallic gold. It has a relatively light aroma of white flesh fruits and a hint of vanilla. As I go to describe the flavour I find myself using the word light for the third time, but having finished a few glasses of this wine I find myself thinking this style of lightly oaked chardonnay could easily become one of my new favourite white wines.
One interesting observation/tip is that I personally found it more enjoyable at a temperature true aficionado's would be say is over chilled, particularly for chardonnay. Translated I am simply saying that I enjoyed it more straight out of the fridge, whereas heavier chardonnays do actually tend to drink better with a little time out of the fridge prior to drinking.
Chapel Hill 2011 Chardonnay
Price - $16 from Chapel Hill Wine , also at selected retailers.
Region - McLaren Vale, South Australia
Final Sip - This wine is a class act from start to finish that was great with or without food. For under $20 you cannot ask for much more from any white wine!