I run with a fast-paced, full-bodied, silky, buttery crowd. For them, wine drinking is a blood sport. You better know your vineyards, top brands, pH levels, weather effects in different years and at different latitudes. Hands down, this crowd favors Rombauer Chardonnay, $38 / bottle. Because of the cost, Rombauer has been called “the doctors’ wives’ heroin.”
Now, I have nothing against Rombauer Chardonnay except the price. On many occasions, I eat dinner alone since my wife is often out with business colleagues. Since I don’t drink more than one glass with dinner, I see no reason to open a $38 bottle of wine. To my delight, I have found a great tasting substitute, Sutter Home Chardonnay, $1.99 / bottle. I secretly swapped out Rombauer for Sutter Home. People could not tell the difference. I even purchased (Amazon) a small stainless steel ice bucket so my Sutter Home can stay chilled at the table.
Sutter Home Chardonnay is a complex, intellectually satisfying, self-confident, medium-bodied, overtly-sexual, wine with some ass-spankin’ tasty corn bouquet. Grown on the eastern slope of the vineyard, it gets just the right amount of rain so the grapes have a perfectly balanced pH at harvest. This, of course, creates a self-important, though not overly conceited or boastful grape. So Sutter Home Chardonnay has just the right blend of earthy, charcoally, medium-bodied flavor with hints of hypo-manic aftertaste. Just right for eating alone.
Oh, one more thing. The plastic bottle and screw top lid make it very convenient.