THE WINO GOES HUNTING FOR A CHEAP DRUNK
Hey, fellow lushes! The Wino would like to a raise a brown paper bag and drink a toast to the recession.
Yeah, OK, maybe it sucks that you lost your job--believe me, The Wino feels your bank-account-draining pain. But let's look on the bright side of the dark side: There's never been a better time to be a wine drinker looking for a good deal. You didn't even have to get a passing grade in Econ 101 to grasp these liquid laws of supply and demand. Just walk into your supermarket and cheer at the shelves and shelves of wine, many marked down to the same price as a grande mocha. Hot damn!
The Wino's going to pickle her liver, ferreting out tasty deals that won't give you a monster hangover, starting with a bottle of $2.99 Chardonnay from the Gross Out.
That's right, The Grocery Outlet--home to brands you've never heard of if you only shop at mainstream supermarkets--carries a decent selection of wines in the $5 range. But it was the $2.99 sale that brought me in, and on a Chardonnay that had been chosen by Food & Wine magazine as one of the best whites under 15 bucks.
The Pine & Post Chardonnay was an older vintage, a 2006, so I'm guessing the distributors were looking to unload before a new vintage hits the market. I was happy to oblige.
A good Chardonnay has a pleasant buttery quality that's balanced with a sharpness that keeps it from being as flabby as the love handles on Zach Galifianakis. The Pine & Post Chardonnay was right on target, as bright as a rare sunny Seattle afternoon. The Wino chugged three glasses of it while eating a big bowl of spinach pasta drenched in marinara. Yes, you're supposed to drink red wine with red sauce, but you know what? Those food-pairing rules are wide open to interpretation. Drink what you like with what you're eating for gawd's sake!
The Wino's rating Pine & Post Chardonnay eight out of 10 brown paper bags, taking off two points off for the two morning-after aspirins.
"Light and tangy, with grapefruit peel overtones to the apple and spice flavors." -Harvey Steiman, Wine Spectator
2005 Chardonnay is the #1 Value Wine and only Chardonnay recommended on NBC "Today." Food & Wine's Ray Isle claims, "I just can't believe this wine only costs $6!"
Fragrant aromas of peach, nectarine and pineapple lead to a wonderfully flavored palate. Baked apple notes marry with toasty, integrated oak rounded out by a clean, balanced finish.
- Varietal Blend: 100% Chardonnay
- Appellation: Washington State
- Vineyards: Nine Canyon, Willard, Oasis, Pete Thomas, W&J, Canyon Vineyard Ranch
- PH: 3.74
- TA: 0.61
- RS: 0.16%
- Alcohol: 13%
- Cases Produced: 4,139