Wine review: Toasted Head 2006 Chardonnay

Toasted Head
California, USA
Buy at
Trader Joes
This wine is good for...
a wine tasting party
a house party
a dinner party
weekend fun
relaxing at home
a holiday

Jon says... Don't Buy

Love it or hate it, this is the quintessential California chardonnay. I hate it. It’s like drinking liquid wood. HUGE oak flavor. Usually I talk about an oak “backbone”, but this one has an oak exoskeleton. Here’s why:

The name, “Toasted Head”, refers to the wine’s aging process. Heads are the top and bottom of wine barrels. Instead of just aging the wine in new wood to impart oak flavor, the winery burns the inside of the barrels with a flamethrower. This brings out massive oak and smoke flavors and gets the maximum woody-goodness in there. Wine + Flamethrower = Awesome.

Toasted Head is one of the most popular California chardonnays out there. If you are an oaky chardonnay lover, you will fall for it after your first taste. If you are still figuring out your taste in wine, you have to pick up a bottle of Toasted head. If you like it, pay attention to Ted’s weekly picks. If you hate it, check out my favorites.

Ted says... Buy

This is one of my most favorite Chardonnays. I first tried this in Feb 2004—yes I have the date, since I tried this wine back in wines class at Cornell and I still have my notes :) Back then I liked the wine, but I didn’t fully appreciate the toastiness and oakiness of the wine. Fast forward 4 years and I love this wine. Aromas of spicy pear and apple that finish a bit creamy with a nice toasted, oakiness, delicious! This wine is going to go great with any char-grilled meat, wood-grilled fish, or even some wood-oven baked pizza. Even better, pair this wine with a cool summers eve sitting around a nice bonfire with a starlit sky.

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