Marof Chardonnay 2007

Surprisingly light inthe glass, this wine looks like riesling and smells like malvasia bianca, at least briefly – it’s probably just Slovenian prejudice on my part, but I really did think for a second that this was malvasia. It’s not, but there’s something about the bright, cheery fruit here that smells very different than other chardonnays. The smells is reminiscent of poire, or pear eau-de-vie, or whatever the proper name for pear brandy is in English; there’s just a hint of heavy alcohols (but not noticeably) plus very light, fresh Bosc pear layered on top. At times, the smells seems to be teen-aged cosmetics – think Miley Cyrus perfume – and then suddenly there’s just the tiniest hint of burnt match before heading back to the fruit meringue pie, less citrus than stone fruit.Surprisingly, the wine isn’t weightless in the mouth; although the color suggests inoffensive whatever, it’s got a bit more heft than that. At first offering all of the charm of pears preserved in neutral brandy, it moves on into something that’s frankly close to circus peanuts, bubblegum, and other children’s candy. There’s a little bit of residual sugar here, acting as sort of a vinuous Wonderbra, and the overall effect is vaguely nasty: it comes across as deeply unserious, slightly vulgar, and pretty damned tacky. The finish does firm up just a bit, though, and you do have glimpses of regional character that could I suppose be described as slightly flabby key lime pie in a graham cracker crust: there doesn’t seem to be enough supporting acidity here, but there is a pleasant bready characteristic that makes it all come out somewhat okay in the end. On the whole, though, this wine is a huge disappointment to me; if the grape had been malvasia, then it probably would’ve been just fine. However, with chardonnay it just feels cheap and lame, especially at this price. C’mon, Slovenia, you can do better than this. I’d suggest you start by inhibiting malolactic fermentation next time, fermenting the wine completely dry, and (maybe?) experimenting with large oak casks, preferably local ones. Please?Marof
Price: $16
Closure: Stelvin

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