To oak or not to oak? That is the question winemakers must decide when making chardonnay, one of the few white wine grapes that can handle oak aging.

It is the oak and more so the corresponding malolactic fermentation that creates the buttery and creamy finish in chardonnay.

The answer to this wine is yes and yes. Sixty percent of this vintage was fermented and aged for nine months in oak and 40 percent was fermented in stainless steel. The result is a medium-bodied wine with fresh orchard fruit and citrus flavors followed by a creamy finish.

Sherry: “Subtle nuances of lime, a bit of pineapple and a caramel and butter finish.” (3.25 stars out of 5)

Chris: “Flavors of pineapple, lemon and apricot with a butterscotch finish.” (3.5 stars out of 5)

Available from $10 to $13.

Coming next week: McManis North Forty Red

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