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Williams Selyem Unoaked Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
The yellowish-green color hints that this wine comes from a cool climate. The aromas are like a basket full of peaches, quince, and Asian pears. The fruit fragrance transitions to an alluring jasmine perfume. The palate is wonderfully balanced with flavors of pear and yellow apple that give way to stone fruit with a floral lift. Round and persistent throughout, the wine finishes with a refreshing and delicate minerality. Chardonnay is a great mate to barrel fermentation and ageing, but this is an excellent example of richness without oak.
Juicy, fresh and bright, this wine is driven by citrus-laden acidity that boosts an underlying richness. Robust apple and pear flavors wrap around touches of earth and wet stone that persist on the finish.
-Wine Enthusiast 93 Points
Like most good stories, the history of Williams Selyem owes much to serendipity. If a grower with an abundance of fruit hadn’t given Burt Williams a few tons of free grapes in the 1970s, Burt might never have discovered his love and flair for winemaking. And if Burt and his partner Ed Selyem had been able to afford the French Burgundies they both favored, they might never have tried making their own Pinot Noir.
The two friends didn’t set out to produce wines for anyone but themselves. And they surely never imagined that their humble experiment in home winemaking would spawn a cult-status winery of international acclaim. Together, Burt and Ed set a new standard for American-made Pinot Noir, and elevated Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley to among the best wine growing regions in the world.
Milsetentayseis 1076 Ribera del Duero Tinto is made with 95% Tempranillo and 5% other native varieties.
TASTING NOTES: A product of its unique landscape, extreme altitude and mineral-rich soil, 1076 Tinto is a bold wine with a distinct character designed to evolve over time. Its freshness and intensely fruity expression are representative of a modern style, moving away from excess, in search of the elegance, smoothness and balance found in the great wines of the world.
TERROIR: A recently restored vineyard situated at over 3,280 feet of altitude where ancestral vines over 100 years old grow harmoniously together with new, indigenous plantings in varied soil comprised of red clay, sand and mineral deposits of quartz, mica, and feldspar.
WINEMAKING: Hand-harvested from a selection of the best plots in the vineyard then separated into concrete, oak or stainless steel fermentation vats depending on the characteristics of the grape and the soil where it was grown. Its production is defined by the team´s constant vigilance throughout the process and their in-depth knowledge of the region, the soil and the native varieties that thrive there.
AGEING: Aged for 18 months in French oak of various sizes and according to the needs of each plot. Bottled in June 2020.
VINTAGE: The 2018 vintage began with abundant rainfall that lasted until late spring. Budding had already begun by the end of April, and as is usual in the Ribera del Duero, mid-May posed great risk of frost. Thankfully, consistent high winds in the area kept it at bay allowing the vineyards to remain unaffected. Spring extended into June with rain and cool temperatures, unusual for this time of year, while summer did not arrive until July bringing with it dry, hot conditions that allowed for the fruit to reach optimal ripeness. The harvest ran from October 5th-October 13th.
Pair with spit-Fire Roasted Suckling Pig.
"Inky violet. Potent aromas of cassis, cherry preserves, incense and potpourri, plus oak spice and mineral topnotes. Alluringly sweet and concentrated, with a spine of smoky minerality supporting intense flavors of dark berry liqueur, bitter chocolate, cola and candied lavender. Youthful, slow-building tannins add shape and grip to an impressively long, juicy finish that echoes the dark berry and floral notes. - Josh Raynolds."
- Vinous (February 2021), 95 pts
"The wine is deep cherry in color exhibiting complex, expressive aromas. Its minerality comes from the soil, the black fruit from the Tempranillo and the spice from a sometime in oak. The combination leads to a full body that finishes with great length.
- Guia Penin, 95 pts
Paul Hobbs Russian River Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
Sourced predominately from the estates that are defined by their proximity to the coast and Russian River climate, the wine displays vivid crimson and aromas of violet, Morello cherry, and black tea. Velvet tannins on the palate ride along a juicy backbone of flavors such as cranberry, Blood orange, and Damson plum. The finish is long, powered behind a crisp acidity and appealing red clay-like minerality.
The largest production cuvée is the 2018 Pinot Noir Russian River Valley, which comes from multiple sites and was aged 9 months in 43% new French oak. Readers looking for a great introduction into the wines of the estate can't go wrong here. Medium ruby, it has beautiful aromatics of raspberries, black cherries, and strawberries, loads of spice, violets, and underbrush nuances, medium to full body, good acidity, and a silky, seamless texture. It's beautifully done and well worth seeking out.
- Wine Spectator 93 Points
Lismore Barrel Fermented Sauvignon Blanc is made from 100 percent Sauvignon Blanc.
Floral notes of passion flower and fynbos, granadilla, gooseberry and pear on the palate along with an underlying minerality which gives this unique terroir driven wine its signature.
"It wasn't easy to make world class Sauvignon Blancs in a vintage like 2018, but Sam O'Keefe managed it with some style. This is an equal blend of grapes from Greyton and Walker Bay with fermentation in concrete eggs and 500-litre wood, showing notes of kelp and rock pools, with stylish gunflint and grapefruit overtones. 2019-25 Cape South Coast (13%)"
- Tim Atkin (South Africa 2019 Special Report), 95 pts
Argot Chardonnay Sonoma County is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
Pouring a green-tinted gold, our Sonoma County Chardonnay is a beautiful wine from word go. Radiating from within, a blast of apple/pear fruit informs this wine both aromatically, and on the palate. As flavors unfurl, a progression of orange blossom, pineapple, white peach, and hazlenut are followed by a finish dominated by ginger, baked apple, with a trailing kiss of mint’s freshness. A stunning wine — wholly informed by the perfection of 2018’s growing season — defined by its dichotomy of massively intense flavors, and superb acidity and freshness.
Raised by minimalistic methods, often associated with the classic Chardonnay winemaking techniques of Meursault. With a focus on the coolest Chardonnay region in Sonoma County, 2018’s long, even growing season favored our vineyards’ moderate climate, old vines and deep volcanic soils. These grapes were allowed an extended ripening period on the vine, resulting in perfect balance and concentrated flavors.
Lancel Creek Vineyard is perched above the tiny hamlet of Occidental on the remote Sonoma Coast. This secluded, two-acre site was prepared, planted, and is still tended by Ulises Valdez. The pale, off-white Goldridge soil provides just enough nutrients and moisture for these densely planted vines to ripen a small amount of intensely aromatic and flavorful Chardonnay. The vineyard faces the Pacific Ocean, a mere five miles to the west. The combined influence of the cold Pacific and the warming afternoon sun produces a wine of incredible richness and sublime balance.
Soil types: Goldridge, fine sandy loam.
Age of the vines: 15 years
Crushed lemon, poached pear, hazelnuts, and white flowers as well as incredible minerality emerge from the 2018 Chardonnay Lancel Creek Vineyard, one of the finest Sonoma Coast Chardonnay I've ever tasted. Intense, full-bodied, stunningly concentrated, and yet still ethereal and elegant, with incredible class and length on the palate, this is another sensational, magical Chardonnay from Ferren that should age nicely for 10-12 years, and I suspect even longer.
-Jeb Dunnuck 98 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
MacRostie Wildcat Mountain Vineyard Chardonnay Sonoma Coast is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
Wildcat Mountain Vineyard Chardonnay always delivers something special and unique, and this vintage is no exception. Both intricate and exotic, this wine begins with alluring fruit aromas of Meyer lemon and fresh pineapple. On the palate, a round, rich mouthfeel accentuates Wildcat’s signature high-tone notes of honey and spice. At the same time, thanks to Wildcat’s windy growing conditions, which thicken the grape skins, it has engaging structure and body.
Brought up in 24% new French oak, the 2018 Chardonnay Wildcat Mountain is another terrific effort. White flowers, toasted spice, peach, and honeysuckle notes all dominate the nose, and it's fresh and lively, yet also textured and lengthy on the palate.
-Jeb Dunnuck 92 Points
The 2018 Wildcat Mountain Vineyard Chardonnay has leesy Bosc pears and white peaches with notes of gunflint and honey-nut notions. It's light to medium-bodied with a good core of peachy fruit, bright freshness and a long, clean finish.
-Wine Advocate 91 Points
Paul Hobbs Chardonnay Russian River Valley is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
A vibrant blend derived from our revered vineyards that are defined by the region's cooling fog and warm afternoon sunshine reveals a pale straw color in the glass and aromas of white florals, ground ginger, and Mandarin orange. Golden Delicious apple and Meyer lemon give way to complex flavors of baking spice and piecrust that add a round texture to accompany its bright acidity, framing the long finish.
There are wonderful aromas of summer-ripe peaches with tropical fruits and flowers. The silky-smooth flavors are reminiscent of baked apples and toasty vanilla bean. The lively acidity makes this an extremely well-balanced Chardonnay. The finish is long and fruity, with an interesting hint of hazelnuts. This wine’s overall taste profiles is creamy with apricots and lemons.
Tasting Note: This very aromatic Syrah has hints of black pepper, dark berries and herbs and a bloody, earthy character on the nose. The palate is full-bodied with velvety but structured tannins and a balanced natural acidity. The finish is fresh, long and supple. Best served at 16 to 18 °C, this wine will greatly benefit from decanting when drunk within the first 3 to 5 years after bottling.
Andrea Mullineux told me that their debut 2012 Mullineux Iron Syrah has been the hardest cru to fine-tune over the years. Indeed, it has been trialed since 2005 but never bottled...until now. "We have been working hard to perfect the acidity here and it's been important to get life into the soil, getting the vineyard healthy, so that it can be picked with good acidity. Because it is dry farmed, in a space of three days, it can god from 22 to 26 Brix – so picking decision is critical," she said. It has a subtle marine influence coming through on the nose with macerated black cherries, boysenberry jam and touches of iodine. The palate is medium-bodied with fine, quite grainy tannins, very nicely poised with touches of fig and marmalade towards the slightly saline finish. This is a strong debut to form the trio of Syrah single "terroir" offerings.
"The 2013 Iron Syrah has a roundness and softness on the nose that almost belies its complexity - red berry fruit, red peppercorns, rooibos and undergrowth scents that are very well defined. The palate is medium-bodied with ripe tannin, wonderfully savory and quite gamey, and beautifully balanced with impressive volume and sustain on the finish that you would have difficult distinguishing from a top Côte-Rôtie. This is an excellent Syrah, my only reservation being that there is a touch of heat on the finish. - Neal Martin"
- The Wine Advocate (erobertparker.com, November 2015), 93 pts
"Similar to the Schist Syrah in its weight and meatiness, the Iron Syrah offers a more elegant, immediate appeal. Dark red plum, smoked meat, and savory herbs are seamlessly integrated on a lush, juicy and firmly structured palate, finishing very very long."
- iwinereview.com (January 2016), 95 pts
Charles Krug Family Reserve Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100 percent Napa Cabernet Sauvignon.
Rising 1,650 feet above the Napa Valley floor on the southwestside of Howell Mountain, the Family Reserve Howell MountainCabernet Sauvignon sits above the fog line. The distinctiveclimate, along with volcanic and iron-rich red soils, producefruit with great balance and intensity.
The 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Limited Release Cold Springs is the most distinctive of the wines in this range of limited-release Cabernets from Charles Krug. Gravel, licorice, menthol and spice all develop in a Howell Mountain Cabernet endowed with tremendous class and nuance.
-Vinous 92 Points