The Hook or Crook Cellars Lodi Chardonnay 2020 is currently available at Costco for under $12, but will soon be available across the country at wine retail outlets. This Chardonnay is produced by Thomas Allen Wine Estates of the Lodi AVA. They produce 12,000,000 bottles of wine a year all for other major wine brands.
They do not name the wine brands they work for but with that amount of wine produced you probably have sampled their wine in the past. They do produce wine under their name and Hook or Crook seems to be their first brand of wine.
The Hook or Crook Cellars Lodi Chardonnay 2020 is labeled a Reserve wine and the concept behind the brand is a $12 wine that can compete with wine selling for twice as much. There are real technical differences between a $12 and a $25 wine, but it is not uncommon for both grapes to come out of the same vineyard.
The technical notes for the Hook or Crook Cellars Lodi Chardonnay 2020 do not go into great detail but they do mention a few significant details. First, this Chardonnay is oak barrel fermented, wines in this price range typically use stainless steel tanks. Stainless steel is easy to clean, can be used over and over with the same results each time, and or more economical.
This wine is cold fermented, the colder the fermentation process the longer it takes for the yeast to convert the sugar in the grapes to alcohol. The longer process also causes the yeast to develop different chemical compounds than warmer fermentation, which means different flavors will be featured.
Typical Chardonnay fermentation with warmer temperatures takes 2 to 3 weeks to finish, the Hook or Crook Cellars Lodi Chardonnay 2020 took 30 to 45 days to complete. That is additional time and care that is seen in more expensive wine. This Chardonnay is then oak aged for an additional 6 to 9 months.
They do not elaborate on why there is a range of dates for the various processes. It often means that various batches of the grapes were produced with separate techniques so when they a blended they will bring unique characteristics to the wine. The alcohol content is 13.9%.
The Hook or Crook Cellars Lodi Chardonnay 2020 Tasting Notes
The color is a shiny pale golden yellow. The nose is buttery, with green apple, honey, vanilla, pear, lemon, and toasted coconut. The Hook or Crook Cellars Lodi Chardonnay 2020 is a full-flavored Chardonnay with excellent fruit and citrus flavors along with oak barrel influence.
This Chardonnay tastes like lemon, green apple, and melon, followed by butterscotch and tart grapefruit. The mid-palate shows creamy vanilla, exotic spice, and orange blossom honey. The acidity does its job well the flavors have plenty of time to unfold.
- The Hook or Crook Cellars Lodi Chardonnay 2020 is a Classic California Chardonnay more in the style of Napa Chardonnay, but sleek and modern.
- This wine has a finish that goes on and on.
- This is a bargain Chardonnay!