When you want a little something different than white Italian wines, go for a nice crisp Chardonnay. And yes, Chardonnay can be crisp! It may not be what you’re used to seeing on American store shelves, but there are many California wine makers that believe Chardonnay doesn’t have to be over-oaked and buttery to be good. And what better place to learn more and discuss this than the annual Chardonnay Symposium in Santa Maria, California.
This promises to be an interesting topic at the upcoming Chardonnay Symposium held in the beautiful Santa Maria Valley on Saturday, July 23. Greg Brewer, who partners with Steve Clifton to make Santa Rita Hills Chardonnay and Pinot Noir at Brewer-Clifton, will speak on a panel on this very topic. Chardonnay is the world’s most-drunk white wine and also the most talked about. Oaked, unoaked, buttery, flinty, fruity and lean: the Chardonnay debate covers it all.
The Grand Tasting will see many Chardonnay producers from Santa Barbara county, Napa & Sonoma valleys and also the Santa Lucia Highlands. Brewer will pour Brewer-Clifton Santa Rita Hills & Mount Carmel Chardonnay, as well as his own label, Diatom Chardonnay. Local chefs feed the patrons with wine-friendly food, who appreciate all the different virtues of the grape for the day.