Tuesday, August 31, 2010

CLOVER HILL VINEYARDS AND WINERY DECHAUNAC


Clover Hill DeChaunac

My recent visit to a state-run wine store in Pennsylvania resulted in the purchase of three wines produced in the Keystone State.  My encounter with Tailgate Red left me enlightened, if not delighted.  My second selection from the state store was a wine from the Lehigh Valley AVA,Clover Hill Vineyards and Winery DeChaunac.

I selected this wine because DeChaunac is a grape with which I had no prior experience.  It's a French hybrid grape planted primarily in the northeastern U.S. and southeastern Canada.

With an alcohol level of 12% abv, it does not appear to be a heavyweight red.  The label tells me to expect “mulberry, dark berry and earth aromas and flavors,” which appears to be right on the money.  The wine sports some very dark aromas, but they seem sour to my senses.  It feels like a well made wine, with good balance between the sweetness and acidity.  It's rather full in the mouth, too, with a good weight. The sour aromas carry over onto my palate, though, and the taste is not something I would go back to experience again.

It's very seldom I experience a grape for the first time and am underwhelmed, but that is the case with DeChaunac.  Even though the wine has all the makings of one I should enjoy, I simply don't.  I feel it's a flavor profile that I just don't care for.  Perhaps with more exposure I would form a taste for it.  For a wine billed as semi-sweet, the sourness hit me oddly.

Props to Clover Hill, though, for utilizing an underexposed grape, and props to those who like it and drink it.


Tomorrow: the real winner from that Pennsylvania Wine and Spirits store purchase.