That chubby golden hippo always manages to put a smile on my face. This time around, I was happier than a happy hippo when a bottle of FAT bastard‘s Chardonnay 2018 landed in my lap. Because living large is exactly what I like to do!
The results of the inaugural Best Value Chardonnay Tasting convened by Winemag.co.za have been announced, with the FAT bastard Chardonnay 2018 top scoring with 90 points.
Seeking to find the best examples of Chardonnay between the R60 and R100 price points, the wines were tasted blind by Winemag.co.za’s suitably qualified panel consisting of Joanne Gibson, Ndaba Dube and Jeanri-Tine van Zyl. Scoring was done according to the 100-point quality scale, with the top-scoring wines going through to a second round of blind tasting and discussion with Christian Eedes (Winemag.co.za editor and roving chair) (press release).
I was totally convinced that I’ve met my most favourite hippo when I reviewed FAT bastard‘s Pinot Noir 2017 a while back (you can read my review here). This hippo, however, is a horse of a different colour. The 2018 Chardonnay is voluptuous and curvy, where the Pinot Noir 2017 is flirty and bold. With space for all body types in this world, I couldn’t wait to be enveloped in the heartiness of their latest offering.
Fat Bastard Chardonnay 2018
Tasting notes: This medium-bodied wine shows classic ripe, rich butter and tropical fruit on the nose and soft, well integrated vanilla on the palate.
In the vineyard: All fruit was harvested in the early hours and the juice pressed while the grapes were still cool to help retain aroma and flavour.
In the cellar: The wine was tank fermented with an element of quercus fragmentus which added greater weight and complexity.
Cellar door price: approx. R85 – R95
The Little Hedonist’s food pairing suggestion: Because this wine has such a big personality, I wanted to pair it with something simple that will not only complement its distinct profile, but also cut through the rich butter notes to break into the more nuanced layers of flavour. I also feel that it needs simple, but strong, flavours, as it is a deliciously complex and layered Chardonnay.
I decided on a traditional tomato and basil linguine dish, with loads of sun-ripened tomatoes for a bit of acidity, handfuls of fresh basil for freshness and more-ishly creamy linguine ribbons to complement the smooth mouth-feel of the Chardonnay. Topped with lashings of spicy black pepper and earthy parmesan, this was living large at it’s best.
Other classic combinations include fish, especially salmon, in a velvety or buttery sauce, or any green salad with a creamy dressing, coupled with grilled chicken strips or crumbly, rich cheeses. Don’t be scared to pair this brave Chardonnay with cooked fruit dishes – I’m thinking Cape Malay curries or bobotie. It loves a bit of ripe, juicy tang to lift out the stone-fruit aromas.
Another stunning addition to the bold FAT bastard portfolio. Whatever the occasion or celebration, make sure to save a double seat at your dinner table for FAT bastard wines. I’m yet to meet someone who isn’t completely charmed off their feet by FAT bastard’s range of fun-filled wines. But don’t be fooled by the bright labels and the quirky marketing – underneath all the cheer there is a serious promise of quality without compromise; a commitment to creative and award-winning interpretations of different varietals found in South Africa.
It’s really that simple. The jolly Mr. b promises to add a certain vivavious element of je ne sais quoi to your soirée with a range of lively wines that remind and encourage you to live the largest version of your life. After all, life is the special occasion we’re all waiting for, so why not get stuck in?
Disclaimer: I was given this product(s) as part of a press drop in exchange for my honest and truthful opinion and review thereof. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are solely those of The Little Hedonist, given in good faith and in no way influenced by the company or its affiliates. All images, unless otherwise stated/credited, are also my own.