Caliterra Tributo Single Vineyard Chardonnay is apparently from the Maitenal Block in Colchagua - essentially, a good part of Chile, where cooling sea breezes provide a favourable climate for whites.
It feels a bit like a Chardonnay that doesn't quite know what it wants to be - gently oaked, there is a yeasty, slightly sherry-esque tang on the nose and initially, the overriding impression on the palate is of pear drops.
With a couple of days' airing, the pear-drop aromas settle down and it becomes a more harmonious blend of citrus fruit acidity, ripe orchard fruits, leesy depth and gentle, rounded oakiness with still a touch of pungency. Good length and finish.
Well-made, pleasant and long with ripe, pure fruit, it seems a bit of a tick-box, centrist-politician of a wine - it does everything one would expect and yet seems designed to offend no-one; neither a full-on New World Blockbuster, but riper, fuller and more quaffable than a traditional European chardie, it treads a safe, unassuming middle ground. As pleasantly unassuming as lukewarm water.
The made-by-numbers feel continues on the back label which declares, with a series of enthusiastic ticks:
- 75% Untouched Land
- Environment Protection
- Community Commitment
- Earth Friendly Packaging
- Single Vineyard
All very worthy and laudable. But somehow rather safe and middling, even if it is a perfectly good, well-made wine at a sensible price.
£10.99 from Baccchus et al, Les Caves du Patron, Partridges of Sloan Square, Bin 21, Ann et Vin, Taylor's Fine Wine; provided for review.
Caliterra - http://caliterra.com/