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The Castleridge Carneros Chardonnay 2021 is a $12.99 Aldi wine exclusive. The Carneros AVA is located inside both Sonoma County and Napa Valley. It is located at the northern edge of San Pablo Bay, so it is well inland between San Francisco and Oakland.
Carneros is a premium Pinot Noir and Chardonnay growing region. Chardonnay wines from here sell from $15 for a brand wine to $50 plus for winery wines, with the bulk of the wines selling in the higher range. While $12.99 is expensive for Aldi it is bargain-priced for Carneros.
The Castleridge Carneros Chardonnay 2021 was produced for Aldi by the largest group of independent growers in coastal California. They control over 17,000 acres of vineyards from Santa Barbara to Sonoma and Napa, with at least 5 vineyards in Carneros.
As usual, Aldi offers zero information concerning this Chardonnay, so we know nothing of the production techniques used. But I do not think we need to be concerned about the quality of the grapes. The vineyards are sustainably farmed and the production team has over 100 years of experience.
If you are wondering how to find out who was behind the production of a wine Google “California Wine Cola”. Find the public search link, the Cola folks are the ones that approve wine labeling so most wines are in their database.
The Castleridge Carneros Chardonnay 2021 back label has tasting notes that suggest the wine had at least partial malolactic fermentation and some oak barrel aging. These attributes are to be expected for a Carneros Chardonnay. The alcohol content is 14.2%.
The Castleridge Carneros Chardonnay 2021 Tasting Notes
The color is a shiny wheat yellow. The nose is lemon, apple, peach, vanilla, pineapple, nectarine, a little honey, and lightly floral. The Castleridge Carneros Chardonnay 2021 is a smooth, rounded wine with some interesting elements of the mid-palate.
This Chardonnay tastes like lemon curd, green apple, tart grapefruit, spice, juicy peach, and Anjou pear. The mid-palate adds vanilla cream, melon, that salty/nutty on-lees thing, and dried apricot. The acidity is well-balanced, the flavors have plenty of time to unfold and the wine has excellent length.
- The Castleridge Carneros Chardonnay 2021 is a well-made tasty wine.
- This is an affordable way to see what Carneros Chardonnay is all about.
- A $12.99 wine from an elite vineyard is always a bargain.