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Mer Soleil Silver
Unoaked Chardonnay 2010

Cool wine bottles. Every wine drinker loves them. We find creative things to do with them; ie…lamps, vases, candlestick holders. I believe as wine drinkers that most of us do not buy a wine based on the bottle and its use after we chug the juice…but maybe we should???

Mer Soleil Silver Chardonnay is a fabulous example of a wine to be chosen for it’s bottle. As you can see the bottle is to appear “concrete” or “stone” looking and unlike traditional glass bottles. (this one is ceramic) It’s said that this look is to replicate the concrete tanks that this non-oaked chardonnay ferments in at the winery. (which is first of it’s kind in the industry.) I believe it may be the only bottle I know of that is made out of ceramic as well. It’s gray color (I guess you can call it silver) and it’s rough, unfinished bottom and fat lipped top to pour from – totally reminds me of ancient pottery. It’s really a great bottle!

Now for the wine. Mer Soleil Silver Chardonnay is produced by the Wagner Family; made famous from their Caymus line of wines. The Wagner family banked on great potential for vineyards outside of Napa Valley and in 1988 they started planting in the Santa Luicia Highlands in Monterey County. Known today as Mer Soleil Wines.

The 2010 Mer Soleil Silver chardonnay is a non-oaked chard. Oak barrels never touch this wine – no malolactic fermentation…yet the color astonishes you when poured into the glass. Golden yellow, almost “buttery looking”. Not what I expected coming from “concrete”. After a few beautiful swirls in the glass, the nose lends apple and even a slight buttery note. Definite rock minerals are picked up in the background. The same is in the forefront of the taste. Minerals with acidic lemon and a bit of grass. Medium body and good viscosity for a non-oaked wine. Finishing smooth with moderate length overall.

I was gifted this wine from a good friend that knew I was primarily an oaked chardonnay drinker and he wanted me to dip my toes into something new! The 2010 Mer Soleil Silver Chardonnay costs around $24.99. I enjoyed drinking it, no doubt, but I give this one a TWO BOTTLE rating on the wine. (Five Bottle Rating on the bottle alone!) I really don’t feel that my like for oaked chards lends to my scoring this wine lower than I expected; I just feel it’s got more bang in it’s package and pricing than in it’s actual product. I have had much better quality, non-oaked chards for much less money.

I’ll leave you with this…I’ve spent more than $24 on a cool, decorative vase in my lifetime….so if you feel inclined to try the 2010 Mer Soleil Silver Chardonnay, then you won’t loose out! The bottle is cool; vintage and will always have a story and be worth every dollar!