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"1995 Versus 1997 Chardonnays"

  by Fred McMillin

You've narrowed your choice down to two $16 California Chardonnays, a 1995 and a 1997. Which should you buy?

Kendall-Jackson Chardonnay To get an answer, we paired ten '95s with ten '97s of the same price. Here are the results, but first a word on the scoring.

The Scoring

Assume the 1995 received 110 votes and the 1997 100 votes. Thus, the 1995 won by 10 votes, or 10% over the 1997. Now, on to the winners. The wine that won by the largest margin is at the bottom of the list.

Place Winning
Margin
Winning
Year
Price The Wine
10th 1.0% 1997 $19 Robert Mondavi, Napa Valley
9th 1.5% 1997 $30 Rosenblum Reserve, Edna Valley
8th 2.4% 1997 $18 Roudon-Smith, Santa Cruz Mtns.
7th 8.0% 1997 $19 La Crema, Sonoma Coast
6th 13.2% 1997 $26 ZD Winery, California
5th 13.5% 1995 $21 Trefethen, Napa Valley
4th 17.0% 1997 $7 Joliesse (Boisset),California
3rd 29.4% 1997 $19 Sattui, Carsi Vyd., Napa Valley
2nd 70.0% 1997 $18 Steele Cuvee, California
Winner 74.0% 1997 $15 Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve (pictured)

Conclusion

Whether you want a $7 or a $27 Chardonnay, buy the 1997, since the '97s won nine of the 10 matches.

 

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