Cheers: Workhorse White

In 1875, after a series of international conferences, a bunch of mathematicians created the Metre Convention, which established the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures in Sèvres, France.


There in Sèvres was stored the world, international, global, kosher, official, universal standard for the meter: a bar of platinum and iridium that is exactly a meter in length. You want to know how long a meter is? Catch the next plane to Sèvres.

Much less planning and pomp went into the creation of Yellow Tail Chardonnay. Even so, it is the universal, honest-to-God standard of average. There are better Chardonnays — dozens, if not hundreds — and there are worse ones. What makes Yellow Tail Chardonnay notable is its above-average cheapness. We got ours at Mike’s on Water Street for $6.99. Shaw’s and Hannaford often have $5.99 Yellow Tail sales (try the bikini-buster Shiraz, avoid the dull Merlot).

Yellow Tail Chardonnay from southeastern Australia is golden in color, lightly oaked, substantial, weirdly fruited (peach? melon?) and entirely agreeable unless you actually know something about Chardonnays.

For some reason, the people at Yellow Tail say it should be served at “backyard temperature,” which would be a tragic error unless your backyard is in Vostok Station, Antarctica. This one does not work at room temperature. But served really cold, it’s an approachable, tropical refreshment that is reliably average.

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