New Label, Same Great Wine: K-J AVANT Chardonnay

This really is the ideal Chardonnay for summer afternoons and evenings, although that doesn’t mean you can’t drink it all year round, because even in the middle of winter, it evokes California’s warm sunshine.

What K-J AVANT Chardonnay succeeds at is a delicate balance: to let fine, cool-climate fruit express itself, with just a touch of the smoky oak Chardonnay needs to round and mellow it, and yet remain lively. You’ll find this 2012 K-J AVANT Chardonnay delicious in tropical fruit, green apple, pear and lemon drop candy flavors, brightened with the racy acidity that coastal-grown grapes naturally possess. Sixty percent of those grapes were fermented in stainless steel tanks, which allows for maximum fruity brightness. The remainder were fermented in oak, but in neutral, older barrels, so that the wine is not dominated by wood, but only seasoned with it. The winemaker wisely chose to limit the malolactic fermentation, which has preserved a juicy, mouthwatering acidity, like a squeeze of lime juice, that makes the wine so clean and vibrant.

What’s so amazing about the 2012 K-J AVANT Chardonnay is the way it combines elegance and sophistication with an easy price. This is a wine that showcases just how balanced California Chardonnay can be, in the right hands.