2005 Gaja "Gaia & Rey" Chardonnay

SKU #1034185 93 points Wine Spectator

 Has classy aromas of apple, fresh pear and light toasty oak. Full-bodied, with super well-integrated fruit that turns to apple tart, light toasty oak and mineral. Intense. Needs time to develop. One of the best whites of Italy. Chardonnay. (JS)  (3/2008)

92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Medium bright yellow. Sexy aromas of fresh stone fruits, nutmeg, clove and flowers. Rich, sweet, supple and dense, with an exotic, almost liqueur-like suggestion of mirabelle A rather powerful and very young chardonnay with the stuffing to age. 92+ Points  (11/2007)

K&L Notes

Gaja's first Chardonnay vineyard, planted in 1979, is named for Angelo's daughter, Gaia, and his grandmother, Clotilde Rey. Fermentation occurs in stainless steel tanks at controlled temperatures of 64°F for four weeks, with natural yeasts, and the wine is aged for 6-8 months in barrique. This white offers an intriguing combination of bright citrus, rich vanilla and stoney minerality, with tremendous acidity and length.

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Varietal:

Chardonnay

- It's hard to believe that up until about 30 years ago, this extremely popular varietal hid behind the veil of geographical names like Chablis and Puligny-Montrachet. Now grown all over the world and bottled by its varietal name, Chardonnay has achieved a level of branding unlike any other wine. Surprisingly, though, what you get when you buy Chardonnay can differ greatly from country to country and even within one country, depending on the climate where it's grown and how it is vinified and aged. From fresh, crisp and minerally with apple and lemon notes to rich and buttery with tropical fruit overtones, Chardonnay runs the gamut. In France's Burgundy, Chardonnay is the source of the prized wines of Chablis, Corton-Charlemagne, M√Ęcon, Meursault and Montrachet. It also the foundation of exceptional Champagne, where it is blended with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier or vinified on its own into Blanc de Blancs. It is also extremely popular in California, and is gaining popularity in Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and South Africa.
Country:

Italy

- Once named Enotria for its abundant vineyards, Italy (thanks to the ancient Greeks and Romans) has had an enormous impact on the wine world. From the shores of Italy, the Romans brought grapes and their winemaking techniques to North Africa, Spain and Portugal, Germany, France, the Danube Valley, the Middle East and even England. Modern Italy, which didn't actually exist as a country until the 1870s, once produced mainly simple, everyday wine. It wasn't until the 1970s that Italy began the change toward quality. The 1980s showed incredible efforts and a lot of experimentation. The 1990s marked the real jump in consistent quality, including excellence in many Region that had been indistinct for ages. The entire Italian peninsula is seeing a winemaking revolution and is now one of the most exciting wine Region in the world. For our entire Italian wine selection, click here. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of Italy.
Sub-Region:

Piedmont

- Piedmont is in the Northwestern region of Italy, bordering France and Switzerland. Piedmont is predominantly a plain where the water flows from the Swiss and French Alps to form the headwaters of the Po river. The major wine producing areas are in the southern portion of the region in the hills known as the "Langhe". Here the people speak a dialect that is 1/3 French and 2/3 Italian that portrays their historical roots. Their cuisine is one of the most creative and interesting in Italy. Nebbiolo is the King grape here, producing Barolo and Barbaresco. In addition, the Barbera and Dolcetto are the workhorse grapes that produce the largest quantity of wine. Piedmont is predominantly a red wine producing area. There are a few whites made in Piedmont, and the Moscato grape produces a large volume of sweet, semi-sweet and sparkling wines as well.