Wine Recommendation
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Wine Recommendation

Carmody McKnight Chardonnay

Carmody McKnight Estate Wines

2005 "Free-Run" Chardonnay, Estate
(Paso Robles)

Free run is exactly what it sounds like: the juices that naturally flow off the freshly harvested grapes before they go into the destemmer/crusher. They are the pure essence of grape core, with no skin contact, and no influence of seed. The resulting wine is pale like straw, as clear and fresh as a spring day, and brilliantly executed. The wine sees about 24% of new French and American oak, but is mostly stainless. Even the label, another gorgeous rendering by owner and artist Gary Conway, evokes the free spirit embodied in this delightful, extremely flavorful wine. Right from the start, its sweet nose of new clover, white nectarines and cherry blossoms beckons you to come out and play. Run free through a riot of cherry trees, barefoot in the long spring grass, not a care in the world, maybe even flying a kite or singing to yourself.

The flavors are crisp and plentiful, ranging from bright Macintosh apple to Bosc pear, then to nectarines and lush tropical fruits. The acid is terrific, and the amazing minerality adds all the complexity needed to make a distinctly fresh and appealing wine. What’s fun is that one minute you taste nectarines and the next it’s papaya. The final finish is peaches: and it is really like biting into a fresh off the tree peach, dripping down your new white t-shirt. Oh well. White t-shirts are not all they’re cracked up to be, but this wine most certainly is. It will liberate your soul.

(Alc: 14.1%, Retail: $18)

Reviewed August 2, 2006 by Laura Ness.

The Wine

Winery: Carmody McKnight Estate Wines
Vineyard: Estate
Vintage: 2005
Wine: "Free-Run" Chardonnay
Appellation: Paso Robles
Grape: Chardonnay
Price: 750ml $18.00

Review Date: 8/2/2006

The Reviewer

Laura Ness

A wine writer and wine judge for major publications and competitions around the country, Laura Ness likens wine to the experience of music. She is always looking for that ubiquitous marriage of rhythm, melody, and flawless execution. What is good music? You know it when you get lost in it. What is good wine? It is music in your mouth.