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Shibumi Knoll Chardonnay 2017

ID No: 447033
Our Price: $115.00 $85.00
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Organic:Yes
Vintage:2017
Bottle Size:750 ml
Product Description

RUSSIAN RIVER, BUENA TIERRA VINEYARD

     On the nose, you smell honeycomb and apricot with a slight hint of warm spices. The color is bright, clear and golden with legs that gently slide down the sides. The taste is a treat of Meyer lemon and vanilla with a touch of Crème Brulee. Its fresh, smooth and delicate. The complex flavors of the old vines make this wine an old soul. The finish lingers just long enough.


Winery: Shibumi Knoll

Don was a serious collector (and consumer) of fine wines for over thirty years. In January of 2003 we brought a small knoll 3.5 miles north of Saint Helena in the heart of the Napa Valley. Included in this two acre parcel was a rocky .75 acre Cabernet vineyard planted in 1996, a very modest vineyard cottage (originally a stone barn built in 1921), a guesthouse and a winery. After an internal remodel of the cottage, many gallons of paint and extensive landscaping, the knoll became our home.

Many years ago we read the book Shibumi, which became one of our favorites: adventure, intrigue, romance, the book has it all. The book introduced us to the concept of Shibumi, a Japanese word describing a physical and emotional state which most nearly translates to “the pursuit of perfection though simplicity” or “Effortless Perfection”. Life on our little knoll in a simple cottage surrounded by vineyards, canopied by majestic oaks and blessed with bucolic 360-degree views, is truly one of perfection through simplicity. Hence when we decided to make wine under our own label, “Shibumi Knoll Vineyards” seemed perfect.

We feel blessed to live in the beautiful Napa Valley and thank you for loving our wines.

 

It is said by Burgundian vinters that the grape is simply a vehicle that allows the vineyard to express itself. Shibumi Knoll is located in the center of the Napa Valley .3 miles off Highway 29 and a quarter mile from the Napa River. It is on the alluvial fan of Mill Creek and is composed of 80% rock. Thus the wine shows the grace of Napa Valley Cabernet yet has the structure we see in wines from stony hillside vineyards. We harvest the grapes when they are ripe but not overly so. Therefore our Cabernet shows many qualities of a great red Bordeaux. Because of these qualities it is a favorite at The French Laundry.

 

Our first vintage of Shibumi Cabernet was the 2003. The grapes were processed at Benessere Winery located about a half mile north of Shibumi Knoll. There, while watching the grapes being processed, Don met another vintner, Eugena Keegan, who was bringing in Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes from Sonoma County. Eugena asked Don if he’d like to barrel taste her wines. The last wine he tasted, a chardonnay from Buena Tierra Vineyards, he felt was stunning. Eugena was moving to Oregon so he approached the owner of Buena Tierra Vineyards, located on the Russian River in Sonoma county about buying the grapes. The owner explained that because the vines were 35 years old and grape production was down, he was going to replant the 2.4-acre block. Don offered to pay full production price for whatever grapes were harvested, an agreement which has continued for 12 years.

The Shibumi Knoll Buena Tierra Chardonnay has proven to be among the best in the country. The 2005 vintage received a 97 from The Wine Spectator, tied for the highest score given California Chardonnay in the first decade of this century.

This ancient block of vines has produced some incredible Chardonnay vintage after vintage.

In the summer of 2012 Don was walking the Buena Tierra Vineyard with Thomas Brown when Thomas pointed to a small block of Swan clone Pinot Noir and said “I could make some great Pinot Noir from these grapes.” 2012 was our first vintage from this block. Our Pinot Noir is a favorite of many among the wines we produce.

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Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mt. is made from 100 percent Napa Cabernet Sauvignon.


Here we go again. It seems as though I’m saying the same thing year after year. Another excellent vintage from Howell Mountain. And once again it’s true. The wine shows deep purple color concentration with both sweet and savory aromatics on the nose. Blackberries, currants, freshly turned soil and black licorice attack your nostrils from the glass. Rich, broad and full bodied as this wine  is the vineyard once again provides the balancing influence of acidity and tannin and helps usher in the finishing notes of roasted meats, cigar box, fennel and more black and blue fruit. If 2012 and 2013 Cresta Velia had a baby it would be the 2015. Incredible concentration from the 2013 with generous portions of fruit from 2012. And although you are not supposed to have a favorite child, if I had to choose I think it would be 2015...until we release the 2016.


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unfined and unfiltered

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Clos Solene Harmonie is made from Paso Robles 67% Grenache, 18% Mourvèdre and 15% Syrah

Composed of 5 of the best vineyards on the west side of Paso Robles with mainly limestone and shale terroirs, brought elegance and  pureness to this vintage.  Aged for 16 months in larger used barrels, it delivers, on the nose, an incredible bouquet, and on the palate, notes of strawberries followed by some silkiness texture with delicate tannins and a great acidity. 

Aged 16 months in mostly used puncheons 400-liter barrels (15% new)

Pairs with roasted pork. Eggplant parmesan, filet mignon

Review:


"The Grenache-dominated cuvée is the 2018 Harmonie, which is 70% Grenache, 16% Syrah, and 14% Mourvèdre. It's a big wine, yet it shows a fresher, beautifully vibrant nose of black raspberries, licorice, candied flowers, and spice that opens up beautifully with time in the glass. Brought up mostly in neutral barrel, it still has a kiss of background oak in its aromas and texture and is beautifully balanced, full-bodied, and elegant on the palate. It's a well put together Grenache that reminds me slightly of a more modern styled Châteauneuf du Pape. Drink it over the coming decade or so."

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 95 Points
Principal Memorias Red Blend 2014

Principal Memorias Red Blend is made from 63% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Syrah, 15% Petit Verdot.

The image on the label represents the "spiral of life", a symbol that is found in all major ancient civilizations that represents the cycle of life and the everlasting evolution.
Memorias is a Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend that includes Petit Verdot and Syrah, which was carefully crafted to achieve a perfect balance. It stands out for its great structure with soft and round tannins that will allow a complex evolution in the bottle.

Denomination of Origin: Maipo Andes Valley
63% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Syrah and 15% Petit Verdot.
Vineyard altitude: 780 meters above sea level.
Soil: Alluvial/colluvial origin, clay loam.
Climate: Sub humid Mediterranean with huge influence of the Andes Mountain.

pH: 3.57
Total Acidity: 5.94 g/L
RS: 2.0 g/L

Review:

Pirque is the highest area with vineyards in Alto Maipo. And El Principal has its vineyards in the highest area of ​​Pirque. Memoria is a kind of second house wine and in which the winemaker Gonzalo Guzmán has been working intensely in search of greater freshness. This must be the best Memorias I have done, but I feel that it still lacks more freshness, he told us last year about Memorias 2013, but this new version, despite coming from a warmer year, feels even more fresh and vibrant. Everything is red in this wine, but it also has the mountain herbal side, the juicy notes, the well marked spicy side. An excellent Memorias .

- Descorchados (November 2017, 93 pts


"Gonzalo Guzman Cassanello collaborated on El Principal's wines with Patrick Léon, the longtime managing director of Bordeaux's Chateau Mouton-Rothschild, who first came to Chile in the 1990s to work on Almaviva. In the ripe 2014 vintage, they blended a relatively high proportion of syrah and petit verdot (22 and 15 percent, respectively) with cabernet sauvignon, creating an intriguing take on Pirque. Its flavors hint at ripe strawberries and darker notes of wild blackberries, the sweetness of that fruit held in a clean, light and delicate frame."
- Wine & Spirits Magazine (June 2019), 93 pts




 93 Points
Tenuta di Arceno Valadorna 2015

Tenuta di Arceno Valadorna  is made from 65% Merlot 19% Cabernet Sauvignon 11% Cabernet Franc 5% Petit Verdot.

This Merlot-led blend is sourced primarily from the Valadorna and Capraia blocks, which produce the estate’s most complex and mineral-based expressions of this variety. The blocks are located within the cooler part of the estate, naturally irrigated by the stream that undulates through it, and feature sandy brown soils and lower yields than typical. These blocks are often the last Merlot blocks to ripen on the estate.

The 2015 vintage was almost perfect for growing wine. The winter was wet, storing vital groundwater for the warmer months ahead. Bud break at the end of March was followed by ideal weather for flowering which produced a perfect crop size. The summer was dry and warm with plenty of sunshine, but not in excess. Necessary rainfall arrived in the first weeks of August without any other rain events until October, creating ideal conditions for harvest. This will be a vintage to remember for its opulence and elegance. In warm years like 2015, Merlot shows its soft, savory and slightly racy character.

The wine exhibits hig-toned aromas of ripe black cherries, vanilla bean and cedar. With bright acidity, the wine expands quickly on the palate. Plush tannins carry through the center with a fine, tingling finish. The palate shows flavors of tart cherry pie, dried red berries and black licorice, with a long finish of white pepper, dusty roses and stony minerality.


Review:

The 2015 Valadorna (65% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc, 19% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Petit Verdot) is a dark and thickly endowed red wine that boasts a rich and lasting grip on the palate. The bouquet offers depth and complexity with dark fruit, leather, cured tobacco and spice. There are also softer notes of chocolate and ground espresso beans. The wine's seamless integration of flavors leads to increased momentum and intensity as the wine continues to open in the glass.- Wine Advocate 95 Points

 Wine Advocate: 95
Clos Solene Hommage a nos Pairs Reserve 2018

Clos Solene Hommage a nos Pairs Reserve is made from Paso Robles 95% Syrah, 3% Grenache and 2% Viognier.

Name means "Tribute to my mentors" in French. This wine was created to pay a tribute to all the winemakers that influenced Guillaume on becoming the Winemaker that he is today.Very elegant on the front palate, the wine is superb.  Balanced and delicate with beautiful tannins, that will age for two decades.

Pairs with rack of lamb, fatty red meats such as Ribeye. Oriental dishes.


Review:

"Brilliant purple. A highly expressive bouquet evokes dark berry preserves, violet, incense and exotic spices, and a smoky mineral note emerges with air. Sweet, palate-staining black and blue fruit liqueur, spicecake, vanilla and floral pastille flavors show outstanding depth as well as energy thanks to an undercurrent of juicy acidity. Smoothly plays power off finesse and finishes extremely long and precise, with resonating florality and fine-grained tannins emerging steadily. - Josh Raynolds" 

- Vinous (February 2020), 96 pts 


"Coming all from Paso Robles, the 2017 Hommage A Nos Pairs is a Syrah-dominated blend that includes 2% each of Grenache and Viognier. It’s a ripe, sexy, opulent effort that boasts a deep purple color, stunning black fruits, chocolate, spice box, and meaty aromas and flavors, a rounded, hedonistic palate profile, and no hard edges. It has a kiss of salty minerality on the finish and can be enjoyed today or cellared for 8-10 years."

- Jeb DUNNUCK (October 31st 2019), 96 pts

This is an epic bottling, overloaded with lush layers of umami and expertly captured fruit. Aromas of baked black plum, currant, cappuccino, dark chocolate and black pepper play on the nose. Framed by firm yet forgiving tannins, the palate combines dry elderberry and prune flavors with charred lamb and beef, asphalt and cracked pepper. This is powerfully elegant, with 3% Viognier and 2% Grenache. 

- Wine Enthusiast (April 2021), 97 pts

 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 96 Wine Enthusiast: 97 96 Points
Kershaw Chardonnay Deconstructed Groenland Shale CY548 2017

Kershaw Chardonnay Deconstructed Groenland Shale CY548 is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.

The inspiration for this Chardonnay stems from my belief that the Elgin region has both a signature grape as well as particular terroirs within its demarcated boundary that reflect regional credentials. This Chardonnay was selected from a sub-region of Elgin from a specific vineyard and an individual clone (CY548).

Tasting Notes:

Sourced from the foothills of the Groenland Mountain in Northern Elgin this clone has been taken from Corton Charlemagne cuttings. It produces wines that have aromatics oscillating between lemon blossom, white flowers, petrichor and struck stone. Full in body they exude concentration with white stone fruit yet reinforced with an austere texture and robustness that makes for excellent aging potential. The Bokkeveld Shales adds structure and concentration to the flavor.

Vineyards: 

Sourced from the foothills of the Groenland Mountain in Northern Elgin this clone has been taken from Corton Charlemagne cuttings.

Winemaking: 

Grapes were hand-picked in the early autumnal mornings, placed into small lug baskets and tipped directly into a press before being gently whole-bunch pressed up to a maximum of 0.6 bar or until a low juice recovery of 580 liters per ton was obtained. The juice gravity-flowed directly to barrel (no pumps were used at all) without settling. The unclarified juice had no enzymes or yeast added to it and therefore underwent spontaneous fermentation until dry, with malolactic discouraged. The wine rested in barrel for 4 months prior to judicious sulfuring and a further 7 months’ maturation in barrel before racking and bottling.

Barrel: Selection: A small number of artisanal coopers are selected from mostly Burgundy, with only French oak was chosen. Up to 40% of the oak is new with the remainder split into 2nd and 3rd fill barrels of predominantly 228 litres.

Look at pairing this with textured fish, straightforward chicken dishes, pan-fried or grilled pork dishes, soft-rind cheeses, cream or creamy dishes be it with pasta or the aforementioned fish, chicken or pork, to allow the complexity of the wine to shine through. If using mustard, preferably use Dijon mustard as it uses verjus (soured grape juice) and not vinegar. Also look to delicate herbs (tarragon, dill, basil, parsley) rather than hard stalked herbs (rosemary, thyme, oregano, etc). Avoid smoked meats or fish as well as highly spiced dishes as this can overwhelm the wine and clash with the oak. I would try oysters; Lobster grilled or boiled but not thermidor as it is too rich; turbot, dover sole, sea bass, yellowtail with a shellfish sauce; fish pie; roasted free-range chicken with tarragon; roast loin of pork with garlic and ginger; truffle risotto; pasta in a clam sauce; slice of brie de meaux.

Review:

"Perfume of flowers, minerals and citrus zest. The palate is dense and focused, almost chewy with an opulent mandarin mid palate and long, savory finish. Matured in 50% new oak that is seamlessly integrated with the wine."

- International Wine Review (Richard Kershaw Lifts Elgin To New Heights, February 2019), 94 pts



 94 Points
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Gaja Gaia & Rey Langhe Chardonnay 2017

Gaja Gaia & Rey Langhe Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.

The winery's historic Gaia & Rey Chardonnay is a wine that not only reshaped the legacy of the house itself, but also redefined Piedmont as one of the truly great winemaking regions of the world. Named after Lucia and Angelo Gaja's daughter, Gaia Gaja, and Angelo Gaja's grandmother Clotilde Rey (the family's great matriarch and one of its most forward-thinking visionaries), Gaia & Rey was first bottled in 1983 and released the following year. With this historic bottling, Angelo Gaja showed the world that exceptional white wines could be produced in the Langhe Hills, where red wines had been produced almost exclusively before. He also delivered to the world what is now considered one of the greatest white wines of Europe, a truly remarkable accomplishment in a country where red grapes have historically dominated the realm of fine wine. The 2017 vintage proves that great quality sometimes comes from scarcity. Three days of frost at the end of April set back the crop size by 10 percent, then high heat in summer and lack of rainfall presented challenges in managing the vineyards. The good news is that with strict selection and our no-compromise approach, the fruit harvested was healthy and excellent white wines were the result, despite the drop in production.


Review:

This wine was first made in 1983, and back then, no malolactic fermentation occurred. Jump forward in time to the 2017 Langhe Gaia & Rey, and this is another vintage in which malo did not start. (Partial malolactic returns in 2018). Since those first years of production, the oak usage has also been tweaked, now with less barrique in favor of more botte grande. Thanks to these changes, the aromatic profile of this wine veers toward citrus and rich tropical fruit, especially in a warm vintage such as this. However counterintuitive, this edition also shows a very bright and precise touch of acidity that serves to give the wine balanced and mouth-cleansing salinity.

- Wine Advocate 93+ Points

 Wine Advocate: 93
Morlet Family Vineyards Coup de Coeur Chardonnay 2017

Morlet Coup de Coeur Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.


Winemaker notes:

From the same hillside vineyards as ‘Ma Princesse’ and ‘Ma Douce,’ this unique cuvée was judiciously blended from a strictly limited number of selected barrels displaying truly outstanding features. It is our ‘Heart’s Astonishment’ or ‘Coup de Cœur.’

Straw yellow color. Complex bouquet of candied lemon, citrus oils, Reinette apple and strong notes of hazelnut and white truffle. Mineral driven on the palate, the mouth feel is rich yet delicate. Seamless and classic, it is wonderfully subtle and long on the finish. With a very high ageing potential, this wine can be cellared for over a decade.

Review: 

The borderline perfect 2017 Chardonnay Coup De Coeur comes from a selection of the best barrels and there are only 150 cases of this elixir. Aged in 40% new French oak, this exotic, powerful Chardonnay offers a heavenly bouquet of honeyed citrus, toasted brioche exotic flowers, and orange blossom. It’s rich, voluptuous, and thrillingly textured, yet has good acidity, remarkable purity, a stacked mid-palate and a finish that won’t quit. Count me impressed; California Chardonnay doesn’t get much better.

-Jeb Dunnuck 99 Points

Coup de Coeur is an über barrel-selection blend of the Morlet’s Chardonnay vineyards, using exclusively Old Wente clone selection. The 2017 Chardonnay Coup de Coeur bursts with spicy notions of allspice and coriander seed over a core of ripe Bosc pears, apple pie and almond croissant with wafts of beeswax and candied ginger. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is tightly wound, offering beautiful tension to offset all the opulent, spicy flavors, finishing very long and incredibly harmonious even at this very youthful stage. 150 cases are due to be made.

-Wine Advocate 99 Points

 Wine Advocate: 99 99 Points
Morlet Family Vineyards Ma Douce Chardonnay 2017

Morlet Family Vineyards Ma Douce Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.


The cool maritime breeze and mild and sunny mountain climate create ideal conditions for this hillside vineyard located on the second ridge from the Pacific Ocean. Handcrafted using classical Burgundian winemaking techniques, this wine is dedicated to Jodie Morlet. It is ‘My Sweet’ or ‘Ma Douce.’

Full yellow color. Aromas of lemon drop, Crème Brulée and orange zest intermixed with strong notes of minerality (wet stones) and fresh hazelnut. Full-bodied, mineral driven, this wine displays a creamy texture and very long mineral finish. Built to age gracefully for a decade, this wine is already very approachable.

Propietary Name Ma Douce

Name Meaning My Sweet “Douce brize” from the Ocean

Varietal composition Chardonnay

Type of wine Vineyard designated

Appellation Fort Ross-Seaview

Vineyard singularity On the second ridge off Ocean High elevation Goldridge soil

Typical harvest date End of October

Picking Manual, small lugs, refer truck

Sorting Cluster by cluster

Fermentation In barrel through native yeast 100% Malolactic

Upbringing Sur lies with bâtonnage

French oak from selected coopers

Bottling Unfiltered

Cellaring time 5-10 years

Serving Slightly below room temperature Decanted when served young

Review:

Ma Douce comes from a vineyard in Fort Ross-Seaview—not far from Marcassin Vineyard. It is planted mainly to Old Wente clone selection. The 2017 Chardonnay Ma Douce comes bounding out of the glass with exuberant notes of ripe peaches, pink grapefruit and guava plus hints of butterscotch, toasted almonds, orange blossoms and acacia honey. Full-bodied, the palate is laden with exotic fruit and citrus layers, offset by a wicked backbone of freshness and the most seductive creaminess to the texture, finishing very long with tons of savory sparks. 450 cases were made.

-Wine Advocate 98 Points

 Wine Advocate: 98
Patz & Hall Dutton Ranch Russian River Chardonnay 2017

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.

100% Burgundian French oak barrels (35% new; 65% 1-2-year old)



Review:

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

 96 Points
Ancien Chardonnay Carneros 2017

Ancien Chardonnay Carneros is made from 100 percent Chardonnay. 

Chardonnay Carneros owes its style, depth, and structure to intensely flavored, low yielding, heirloom clones growing in two Carneros vineyards: on the Napa side, the Toyon Farm and on the Sonoma side, the Sangiacomo Vella Ranch. Ancien Wines hand-selected the cuttings themselves, from older vineyards in the Carneros area. These cuttings are reputed to have origins tracing to Paul Masson who imported them from Burgundy in the early 1940’s, from Louis Latour's renowned Corton Charlemagne vineyard. These selections are often referred to as “Old Wente”or “Robert Young,”denoting the sourced mother blocks in the 1960s.

Notes of ripe apple and honeydew melon greet and are delicately perfumed by notes of freesia and citrus blossom. Brighter notes of lime and Meyer lemon match the refreshing acidity of this wine, balanced by a creamy palate and leading to a finish that will continue to lengthen in the coming months. A wonderfully textured and vibrant Chardonnay displaying the best of Carneros.

Chardonnay Carneros is guided toward a layered, complex, and expressive style that develops gracefully in the bottle and shows enticing minerality, vivacious fruit, length and structure. The watchword is balance. Grapes were pressed as whole clusters, settled and fermented entirely in French oak from four different coopers, chosen for their unique synergism and support of the fruit on the palate. One third of the barrels were new. A variety of yeasts were used, including native strains, and fermentation proceeded evenly and slowly, averaging a cool 55°F. The wine was aged on its yeast lees, which were stirred weekly through the spring.

Flanagan Chardonnay Bacigalupi 2017

Flanagan Chardonnay Bacigalupi is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.

Just south of the winery, Bacigalupi Vineyard straddles Westside Road in the upper reach of Russian River Valley. The 125 acre vineyard encompasses a range of terroir, from heavier valley floor soil along the Russian River to alluvial clay loam on the rolling hillsides. The fruit is sourced from a superb block of 25 year-old Wente Clone vines located on the western slope of the site. Bacigalupi was the source of the Chateau Montelena Chardonnay that, famously, beat the French wines at the "Judgement of Paris" in 1976. Bacigalupi Chardonnay has a nose of lemon zest and vanilla bean. The palate opens with red pear and Meyer lemon, and brioche toast and honey comb notes on the finish. Like well-made Chardonnay from great vineyards around the world this wine benefits from getting some air, will age for years, and is best when served chilled around 50 degrees. This wine will evolve in the bottle for many years to come. A terrific wine from one of Sonoma County's top sites for Chardonnay.

Review:

"Fresh and floral, this bold, layered wine tastes of green apple, lemon and lime, with a pleasing bite of tartness on the midpalate. The acidity is persistent and supportive of the fleshy full-bodied nature of the tropical richness the wine otherwise presents. - Virginie Boone"
- Wine Enthusiast (August 2019), 91 pts

 Wine Enthusiast: 91
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