2000 Idaho “Reserve”
Always sparks some interest when a tasting panel or even a single reviewer puts that kind of tag on a wine… Quite a level of intensity to live up to.
Hells Canyon Winery does up some tasty Chardonnay. Yep, I can now say that I really like a Chardonnay from Idaho.This 2000 vintage Idaho Reserve Chard is all gold. It is actually a very thick, clean, and gold in color Chard that can show you very rich, full flavored and oaky tropical flavors and get you thinking of Idaho in a much different way. Sure I know that the Northwest is home to tons of stellar wines and Eastern Washington is blowing up right now with its killer Merlots, concentrated Syrahs and kickin’ Cabs, but when you start bringing Idaho into the mix many may not know of the possibilities that the Gem state may have to offer. Well that is what I’m here for. Think Hells Canyon Winery; around since 1980 and coming into wine competitions in the Northwest with some strong contenders.
This wine is full-flavored and chewy with nice tropical mango flavors joining in to blend with the spicy vanilla oak. The big boisterous mouth-feel has me thinking of other places, but I got my head in check and started thinking about Idaho again. The depth of flavor goes on and on and unfolds with the deep toasty tropical fruit first and then has subtle lime peel notes that come in ever so slightly to tighten things up in the middle and cut threw some of the bright butterscotch.
Full-blown aromas bring you into this wine at first and the loaded powerful mouth feel and long finish will bring you back for more. I have heard that a few vintages ago this Reserve Chardonnay was named “Best Chardonnay in the World” by a U.K. publication. That always sparks some interest when a tasting panel or even a single reviewer puts that kind of tag on a wine. Quite a level of intensity to live up to, but also some insight into how much some folks love this wine. I tasted this Chardonnay at room temperature so I could let some of the flavor out that a chilled bottle can suppress sometimes and it was well worth it. Very lush and dominating in any Chardonnay tasting, showing some nice new world strength that goes a long way.
Hells Canyon Winery has a series of beautiful labels that are expressly painted for the Winery, all depicting wildlife sporting scenes. I have seen these wines for sale at some online sporting stores and I think some of them are being snatched up just for their collectability as a nice looking bottle to sit next to the stuffed small-mouth Bass. Here is a view of last years’ label.
Nice juice, nice package and the winery donates to a variety of wildlife conservation organizations. 250 cases made.
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