St. Josef’s Winery NV Lilli Sparkling Chardonnay, Willamette Valley, $18

By on December 19, 2018

Josef Fleischmann, whose grandfather operated a winery in Hungary, sought refuge in Germany as the Soviet Union expanded its occupation after World War II. Trained as a baker, he landed first in Chicago where he met Lilli, and they later bought a farm in Oregon near Canby. More than a decade later, they turned a portion of that farm to vineyard in 1978 and became a bonded winery in 1983. Josef uses his sparkling wines to pay tribute to Lilli, and his team creates the Chardonnay using the charmat method rooted in Italy rather than methode Champenoise. Delicate aromas of apricot, lime juice and a beignet with sweet cream filling lead to bright and tight flavors of nectarine, orange oil and enjoyable minerality. That profile, combined with the lighter mousse, still easily overtakes the 1.3% residual sugar.

Rating: Excellent

Production: 185 cases

Alcohol: 12%

Winery website

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About Great Northwest Wine

Articles authored by Great Northwest Wine are co-authored by Eric Degerman and Andy Perdue. In most cases, these are wine reviews that are judged blind by the Great Northwest Wine tasting panel.

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