This is one of the least-expensive Washington wines we've run across in recent months — and it's also one of the best. This Chardonnay from Precept Wine shows just enough oak to let you know it's there, yet not so much that it gets in the way of some terrific fruit. This opens with aromas of melon, citrus, butterscotch and pear. Bright acidity highlights the palate and flavors of pineapple, butterscotch candy and buttery notes. A richness on the palate gives way to a lengthy finish. Rated "Outstanding by Great Northwest Wine (13 percent alcohol).
Cases produced: 4,139
Food matches: Enjoy with crab or scallops.
Precept Wine, 1910 Fairview Ave. E., Ste 400, Seattle, 206-267-5252, www.preceptwine.com.
— Great Northwest Wines