WINE REVIEW: Arché 2015 Chardonnay, Montague County, Texas ($∞)
by Andrew Chalk
This is a library wine. I doubt that anyone who has not already purchased a bottle of the 239 cases produced will be able to get one. I have had it in my cellar since release. I pulled it this weekend as much as anything to investigate the old conundrum ‘can Texas wines age?’
Oh my God. I need not have worried. This wine floods the mouth with ripe tropical fruit, gushes with the vanillin of French oak, fills the throat with cream soda flavors in the finish, and it is all backed up by a firm phenolic backbone and lively acidity. The intriguing thing is that the style is not cozily classifiable as California or Burgundy. There is the fruit of the former and the gout de terre of the latter.
Most remarkably, Grayson Davis was the winemaker of this wine and it was one of his first efforts. Based on the results, Arché has a bright future. The St. Jo region is out of the mainstream of the Texas wine industry, being perched on a brow a short distance from the Red River, but it may be worth a day trip.