Bottle 2 of 12- Spencer Bay Chardonnay 2009, South Africa

While I’ve always had a bit of a ‘Marmite’ relationship with Chardonnay (I’m not a lover!), there was one bottle in the case I ordered from Tesco, and I was determined to keep an open mind.

Last night, when my sister and her boyfriend came round for dinner, since we were having a spicy meal of jerk chicken and coconut rice, we decided to give it a try. Given that the chicken dish contained my mum’s own home- grown chillies (which just about blow your head off) I didn’t think my taste buds would be up to much wine testing, however, the subtle hint of apples and the creaminess that was present in the first sip, complemented both the spiciness of the chicken and the silkiness of the coconut rice perfectly. The flavours really cut through the heat where other wines would have been lost and there was none of the unpleasant oakiness I usually associate with Chardonnay.

The bottle recommends that you accompany this wine with ‘smoked salmon, roast chicken or lunchtime salads’, however, unless you enjoy Chardonnay as your default white wine, I would have to disagree. If, instead, you maintain to anyone that will listen, that you don’t like Chardonnay, I recommend giving it a go alongside spicy dishes such as the jerk chicken we had (I think the recipe can be found in Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals), or with a nice hot Indian curry.

One disclaimer, at 13.5%, I would go easy on the number of glasses you consume!


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