2017 VINE CLIFF LOS CARNEROS CHARDONNAY
This time of year, we start our tastings with nearly two dozen Chardonnays, and see every style from extremely rich, luscious and buttery offerings, to shimmering, unoaked crisp and minerally, Chablis-like examples. Somewhere in the middle of those very opposite styles you’ll find a perfect balance of concentrated, pristinely focused fruit that perfectly balances the elegant oak and subtle buttery characteristics. When we find one of these, it really stands out in a crowd of countless others. Vine Cliff’s 2017 could be the reference-standard for perfectly balanced, intensely powerful Chardonnay… It is an absolutely pure expression of concentrated fruit with just enough oak and butter characteristics to appeal to anyone that tries it. If you enjoy Chardonnay, trust me on this one.
Vine Cliff has a terrific reputation of quality and consistency and is one of Napa Valley’s historic wineries, being established in 1871. This Chardonnay comes from their twelve-acre Estate vineyard in the heart of the Los Carneros appellation, an area that’s absolutely perfect for producing perfectly ripe, incredibly balanced Chardonnay fruit. The fruit was pressed long and slow in a Champagne style to maximize freshness and you’ll taste it in this brilliant Napa Valley Chardonnay.
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Winery Notes: “Our 2017 Los Carneros Chardonnay opens up with inviting citrus notes of Meyer lemon and mandarin orange, followed by floral notes of honey suckle, and jasmine. A second breath of wine takes you to a place of minerals, with hints of flint and wet stones. The gentle kiss of oak seems to seep through the fruit ever so slowly. The beauty of this vintage is reflected by the perfect balance between fruit, oak, and acid. The palate exhibits a depth of fruit flavors ranging from golden delicious apple, tangelo, and nectarine. On the finish the wine ends with a medley of honey, citrus, and floral notes.“
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