When nothing but the taste of a crisp, chilled white wine will do, we often reach for Chardonnay. Or Pinot Grigio. Or, in a pinch, a Riesling. But what about Chablis? For years, this lesser known white wine has been an outcast, the butt of jokes, more recognizable as the namesake of a colorful character in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil than as a drinkable wine.
But perhaps the less-than-stellar reputation of Chablis in the U.S. comes not from the product, but rather from the lack of knowledge about the wine. Chablis is a wine made from chardonnay grapes that are grown in the northern region of France. The wine takes on different tones than chardonnay, however, because they are not traditionally aged in oak barrels, but rather in stainless steel vats. Chablis should taste clean and crisp – a bit more tart than Chardonnay – and it pairs particularly well with seafood, such as oysters, lobster and fish.
The recommendation: Steve Kennett of Old Village Wine & Spirits says the shop carries only one true Chablis, Domaine Savary, at $29 per bottle.
“French wines in general don’t sell much in Oklahoma,” Kennett says.
Ranch Acres Wine & Spirits offers a variety of Chablis, ranging in price from $20.99 to the $70 range.