Everyone just calls it “Gun Bun”
Yeah, don’t try to pronounce the name, everyone just calls it “Gun Bun” anyway.
I’ve only heard amazing things about Gun Bun’s winery. It’s an estate with history and personality and, although I’ve never been there, I can tell you that, at least on social media, the “Cast of Characters” behind the brand are wonderful. So, with a good rep and socially engaging peeps, I just had to see what all the hype was about and pulled this bottle off the shelf of a local grocer. (Spoiler alert: I was not disappointed.)
About the Wine: Gundlach Bundshcu’s estate vineyards are located at the southernmost part of Sonoma Valley, at a crossroads of four AVAs: Sonoma Valley, Sonoma Coast, Carneros and Napa Valley. The Gundlach Bundschu Chardonnay is made from 100% Chardonnay grapes from various Chard blocks across the estate. Each block was harvested, taste-tested, and fermented separately, with the most flavor driven fermented in stainless steel and the remaining (about 80%) fermented in 100% French oak barrels (of various ages to keep the oak-effect in check).
This specific vintage of Gundlach Bundschu Chardonnay was aged in 100% French oak barrels (80% new, 20% seasoned) for 10 months.
Flavor Profile: A soft yellow in the glass, the Gundlach Bundschu Estate Vineyard Chardonnay emits a mixture of calming creamy butter and the unmistakable twinge of lemon-lime zest. And that funky duality plays on the palate as well. The initial texture is an enveloping round one, like jumping into a swimming pool at just the perfect temperature. You’ll get flavors of supple red apple, a bit of banana, with a hint of nuts and vanilla as well. Let it linger, let it sit, swish and swirl the wine around in your mouth for a bit and you’ll feel change — morph really — into something else completely. That subtle red apply transforms into an acidic green one; where there was a bit of banana, now lengthy lemon; and in the place of nuts and vanilla, you’ll find the distinct gravelly minerality so attune to the Sonoma Coast.
Food Pairing: With its split personality, you’d do well to pair Gundlach Bundschu Estate Vineyard Chardonnay that celebrates both Jekyll and Hyde. I’m thinking of a basic parmesan risotto gently tossed with a variety of spring vegetables and topped with just a few simply grilled prawns. The creaminess of the risotto will accompany the softer initial mouthfeel, while veggies like sweet peas and spring onions will play with the dual sweet-acidic experience. And lastly, you’re going to want something from the sea to further enhance that beautiful maritime minerality in the long, lingering finish.
I also paired this wine with a pizza, but a very specific pizza topped with a vegetable medley (tri-color bell-pepper strips, red onion, broccoli florets, black olives, and mushrooms) and just a delicate distribution of creamy goat’s cheese. Simple, but all those tastes and textures are there to pick and pull with those in the wine.
Either way — fancy, casual, or somewhere in between. Just promise me have fun with this wine.
More Info: Clearly based on these tasting notes I am seriously interested in trying more Gun Bun wine. I found the Gundlach Bundshcu Estate Chardonnay at Safeway (Sale Price: $21). I’ll keep my eyes peeled and taste and review what I can find.
And when I get myself back up to Sonoma, you can rest assured they’ll be on my list of tasting experiences. Plus I have to meet Boss Lady.
For more information about Gundlach Bundschu, their wines, and winery, please do visit the Gunlach Bundschu website.
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