Sinor-LaVallee Estate Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
Sinor-LaVallee Chardonnay reflects a maniacal attentiveness only possible through sole proprietorship from viticulture through winemaking. The aim was to create a singular Chardonnay that expresses the totality of Bassi Ranch’s ultra-coastal terroir.
The wine Chardonnay offers fragrant aromas of tropical fruit with notes of butterscotch, apricot and crème brûlée. The palate is rich and viscous, yet never loses its energy or focus. Flavors of pear, pineapple and peach show trailing notes of vanilla, mineral and spice. A luscious, full-bodied mid palate yields to a sense of balanced sleekness on the finish.
Yellow with green hints Pineapple aromas with toasty notes and a fresh mineral character and finish.
Colmant Brut Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay (Franschhoek and Robertson).
15% of the base wine has been barrel fermented.
Ageing: This wine spends a minimum of 45 months on the lees at a consistent temperature of 14C before degorgement.
Tasting: Delicate light gold color with a lime-green hue. The nose is fresh, lemony and floral with notes of green apple, followed by yeasty and biscuity aromas brought by the lengthy maturation on the lees. Very fine bead of bubbles with a persistent mousse. Opulent on the palate, this wine shows a harmonious balance between fresh zestiness, mineral complexity and a warm breadth of leesy creaminess. It promises to develop great texture over time.
Drinking tips: Ideal with pan fried scallops or line fish "au beurre blanc", it is also the oyster's best friend and will enhance the flavors of parmesan, asparagus, artichokes, parma ham,…
"The core of this wine, which subsequently spent 52 months on lees, comes from the 2015 vintage and shows the ageing potential for which Colmant bubblies are famous. Savoury, fresh and intense, with plenty of colour, added complexity from reserve material, notes of aniseed and citrus peel and a fine, refreshing finish. 2021-25"
- Tim Atkin (South Africa 2020 Report), 93 pts
There are many alternatives to Champagne, and South Africa is no exception with some fine “Method Cap Classique.” Jean-Philippe Colmant hired winemaker Nicolas Follet to create a small range of impressive sparkling wines; they eschew malolactic fermentation and practice extended lees aging.- NM"
- eRobertParker.com (Issue #196, August 2011), 92 pts
A blanc de blanc with the heart of Chardonnay, the NV Brut Chardonnay has focused citrus tones on the nose with notes of yellow pear and green apple. The oak is subtle here, with a solid beam of acidity through the mid-palate. The wine is thoughtful and focused, and the finish leaves my mouth watering; there is serious acidity here, and they are doing it right. Colmant is the little guy doing some really great things— quietly focused wines, with serious aging potential. Keep this small producer on your radar. I expect nothing but great things in years to come from JP Colmant and his new winemaker, Paul Gerber, formerly of Le Lude. - Anthony Mueller"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 91+ pts
"Our favorite Colmant sparkler by far, this blanc de blancs would easily pass for good quality Champagne. It’s pale straw with a fine bead with biscuit and lemon aromas. Very flavorful and complex on a rich palate with a persistent finish, it’s 100% Chardonnay, 15% barrel fermented, and spends 4 years on the lees. RS 5 g/L"
- I-WineReview 92 pts
Evening Land Seven Springs Vineyard Summum Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
The Estate Chardonnay comes from a unique block of young vines at the southern edge of Seven Springs. With vines running right up to a rich forest of Douglas fir, these Burgundian clones of Chardonnay face northwest with a view across the entire vineyard. The Seven Springs Chardonnay underwent a very gentle whole cluster press before being racked to French oak barrels for fermentation. The wine remained in barrel, roughly 30% of which was new, for 12 months before being racked to tank. The wine completed élevage in tank for another 6 months before bottling.
Brilliant straw-yellow. Fresh and energetic on the incisive nose, displaying fresh pear, nectarine and Meyer lemon scents accompanied by suave floral, saffron and chalky mineral flourishes. Silky and open-knit, offering densely packed yet shockingly lively citrus and orchard fruit, honeysuckle, oyster shell and saffron flavors that show superb tension and back-end lift. Finely delineated and lithe in character, finishing extremely long and seamless, with vibrant mineral cut and lingering floral and orchard fruit notes.
-Vinous 95 Points
Flowers Camp Meeting Ridge Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
With mild temperatures leading to a long growing season and a surprise-free harvest, the 2018 vintage can only be described as idyllic. Alternating spells of cool and warm weather during bloom led to varying berry sizes, perfect for developing complexity in Pinot Noir & Chardonnay. Morning fog, afternoon sunshine and a lack of heat spikes throughout the summer allowed for a long ripening period that developed fruit with excellent natural acidity and beautiful flavors.
Mouth-filling citrus, orange blossom and lemon flavors highlight the 2018 season with a textural mineral note gliding across the finish. This is a year marked by brilliant natural acidity, so don’t be afraid of laying some 2018 Chardonnay down for the future.
With age comes maturity and beauty. Our Camp Meeting Ridge Estate vineyards are nearly 30 years old and among the longest standing in the area. Their robust root systems give them a depth and resilience that allow the vines to flourish in raw conditions. They express the unique traits of the setting where they grow. In 2018, our vineyards gave us everything we could have hoped for, and we did our best not to get in the way. The Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from this vintage are profoundly complex wines that convey the nuances of a specific time and place.
Sourced entirely from our organic and biodynamically farmed Camp Meeting Ridge Vineyard. Planted in 1991, these “older” vines are producing our most exciting and interesting Chardonnays to date. Given the extremes of this site, each small block ripens at its own pace. Picked by hand in the foggy frigidness of the early morning, fruit integrity and temperature were ensured for a whole cluster pressing by sunrise.
Coming from the Fort Ross-Seaview appellation, the 2018 Chardonnay Camp Meeting Ridge is more mineral-laced, with a touch of marine-like iodine in its orchard and citrus fruits. Nicely textured and medium to full-bodied, with bright acidity, it's going to benefit from a year (or two) in bottle and should keep for a solid 7-8 years or more.
-Jeb Dunnuck 94+ Points
Patz & Hall Dutton Ranch Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
Winemaker and Founder James Hall. Since 1988 founder and winemaker James Hall has guided the Patz & Hall winemaking program, instilling it with his own boldness, imagination and trademark perfectionism. Combining a belief in great viticulture, traditional winemaking practices, and the judicious use of innovative techniques, James has earned a reputation for crafting dramatic benchmark Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs that balance vibrant power with vineyard-inspired depth and sophistication. In 1983 James joined Napa Valley’s Flora Springs Winery and Vineyards as assistant winemaker. There, he spent four years developing his expertise crafting barrel-fermented, small-lot Chardonnays. While at Flora Springs, James struck up a close friendship with sales manager Donald Patz, and the two soon discovered that they shared a similar philosophical approach to wine and winemaking. In the spring of 1988, while working as the winemaker and estate manager for Honig Winery, James teamed up with Donald and Heather Patz, and Anne Moses to make and release Patz & Hall’s inaugural Napa Valley Chardonnay.
Aromas of ginger, guava and Crème brûlée with toasted almond, and toffee-brown sugar. Dense, and full bodied, there’s a pleasingly crisp and mouthwatering green apple note on the palate that melds with dried apricot, tangerine flavors along with a hint of toasted oak.
From the Russian River, the 2017 Chardonnay Dutton Ranch is a step up and has more intensity and depth, with a rocking bouquet of honey stone fruits, brioche, toasted hazelnuts, and crushed stone. Rich, medium to full-bodied, and beautifully balanced, with bright acidity, it has a kiss of background oak but is a seriously good, layered effort that will cruise for 5-7 years, probably longer. - Jeb Dunnuck 96 Points
Don Miguel Vineyard
Russian River Valley AVA
Acero is the Spanish word for steel and refers to the fact that this wine has never seen any oak. Especially selected for fruit intensity and aromatics, the grapes are fermented in stainless steel to capture the purity of the flavors. After completing malolactic fermentation, the wine is kept in the tank until bottling in late spring.
The blend of clones in the 2011 Acero is 67% See and 33% Rued.
The grapes were harvested October 1-2, gently whole-cluster pressed and cold fermented together in stainless steel tanks at 55 degrees F. After completing the primary fermentation, the wine went through 100% malolactic in the same tank. It was bottled in August 2012.
This is another classic bottling of Acero -- attractive bright fruit, fresh and lively, with notes of lemon cream, white peach and ginger. Crisp and vibrant in the mid palate, it shows great balance, full flavors and a dry, long finish. It is easy to drink and to enjoy, perfect with foods like tapas and light dishes. I would recommend serving it at 46-48 F.
The Marimar Estate
Exporting a Legacy To California
Nestled in the rolling hills of western Sonoma County, the Russian River/Green Valley appellation is a perfect microclimate for growing Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Only 10 miles from the Pacific Ocean and 50 miles north of San Francisco, the site is influenced by the sea's cooling breezes and drifting fog. That is why Marimar Torres selected this privileged location to "export" the Torres family legacy of fine wines to California.
A Catalan Farmhouse-Winery
Built in 1992 with a capacity of 15,000 cases, the winery sits on a hill surrounded by vines. The production wing is outfitted with carefully selected equipment, to allow the control essential to producing a wine based on minimal handling. Its three barrel rooms with independent temperature and humidity controls provide flexibility to experiment with various vinification techniques, in order to best express the fruit's character.
The Marimar Vineyard
The Don Miguel Vineyard: A Unique Site
Marimar came to live in California in 1975. After two years of searching, she acquired the land and began planting the vineyard in 1986. Today there are 30 acres planted with Chardonnay and 30 with Pinot Noir. The wines are made entirely from estate-grown grapes. Named in honor of the late patriarch of the family, the vineyard is unique in California because it is totally European in style. The vines are trained very close to the ground on an open vertical trellis, following the slope of an east-facing hillside; the rootstocks are phylloxera resistant; and the planting density is 2000 vines per acre, four times more than is traditional in California. Such high density promotes root competition and diminishes vigor, naturally reducing the output per vine.
Yields are low and labor is intensive, but the vines live longer and produce grapes with greater concentration of flavors, more refined and elegant aromas, and better balance. To contribute complexity, Marimar did extensive research to select several clones of each varietal: See, Rued and Spring Mountain for Chardonnay; and Cristina 88, Swan, Pommard, Lee, Dijon 115 and Dijon 667 for Pinot Noir. Each clone brings different attributes to the final blend, resulting in wines with deep layers of flavor
The estate Cabernet Sauvignon is grown primarily along the southwest ridge of the vineyard. The vines produce small berries with bountiful flavor, concentration and intensity, but also a good degree of finesse, excellent structure and layers of complexity that will continue to develop during extended bottle aging for those who want to cellar and age their wines. The wine is powerful, elegant, full-bodied.
Bottled unfined and unfiltered.100% free run
Pumpovers and punch-downs, up to 45 day macerations
Native yeast, 5 day cold soaks
22 months in 75% new French oak barrels
Fermented in concrete and stainless closed top tanks.
"The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Red Mountain Estate is a thrilling effort from winemaker Todd Alexander that rates with some of the most monumental wines to come out of Washington State. Based on 100% Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from their estate vineyard on Red Mountain, brought up in mostly new barrels, it reveals a saturated purple color that's followed by a rich, primordial bouquet of crème de cassis, espresso roast, crushed rock, and graphite. It needs considerable air to start to show its potential yet is a full-bodied, powerful wine that has subtle oak, plenty of sweet tannins, and a huge, layered finish that won't quit. It's the tannin management that's truly spectacular. This brilliant wine needs to be forgotten for 4-5 years and will keep for 2-3 decades."
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2019), 99 pts
Tenute Silvio Nardi Poggio Doria is made from 100 percent Sangiovese.
Ruby red color with garnet highlights. Ample and highly complex flavors at the nose develop then to mineral notes of graphite, fruity tones of red berries and spicy aromas of clove and vanilla. Long and balanced at the palate, smooth and persistent notes bring to the elegant end characterized by present and velvety tannins
An impeccably balanced wine, and a perfect partner to a big Tuscan steak (air-dried for extra softness), the Tenute Silvio Nardi 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Vigneto Poggio Doria offers rich dark fruit intensity, good concentration and vivid aromas. It shows extra power and depth with plum, blackberry and a woody red fruit tone that recalls pomegranate or cassis. Even the appearance of this wine is a tone or two darker, albeit with that pretty Sangiovese shine and gloss that radiates from inside the glass. This Brunello delivers.
-Robert Parker 96 Points
The purity of blue fruit, flowers and subtle wet earth are very impressive on the nose. Full body, firm and very silky tannins and a long and beautiful finish. Shows strength and longevity. Better after 2021.
-James Suckling 95 Points