by Fred McMillin
for October 7, 1997
The Wine That Was Too Good
Prologue: We examined 60 wines closely in my last S.F. State course. The wines get a bit better each week, adding to the excitement. However, I made a serious mistake. One of the first wines we tasted in the very first class set the bar too high. It was such a good white, we could never top it.
The Rest of the Story: I should have known better. Our winning white was a California Reserve 1993. A non-reserve '92 had been rated by critic Jerry Mead against two more pricey French counterparts. Jerry preferred the California wine "by a mile." The 1991 vintage had merely finished first in a major international French-California shootout held in Chicago.
So, here's the wine we couldn't top:
'93 Estate Reserve Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains
Postscript: Many years ago, it appears that Stanford Med School grad David Bruce knew much more about dermatology than enology. At least, I found a review of one of his early efforts that read, "Bruce's Old Dog White is dull and watery, with no fruit flavors." Well, that dog wouldn't hunt, but these Chardonnays sure will!
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