A fantastic debut vintage for newcomer Far Mountain.
94 Points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): "Lemon oil, white flowers, chalk and mint give the 2019 a brilliant upper register that almost comes as a surprise once the wine shows its superb depth and persist ence. This highly expressive, nuanced Chardonnay has a lot going on and plenty to offer.”
94 Points Wine Enthusiast: "High-toned and floral, this wine offers a generous mouthfeel of salty oak, mineral and wet stone. The elegant fruit profile combines pear, apple and Meyer lemon with ease, complementing the body weight with ample acidity."
94 Points James Suckling: "A polished, minerally chardonnay with sliced apple, lemon rind and some stone and flint. Laurel and other herbs, too. It’s medium-to full-bodied with a creamy texture and balance. Phenolic texture. Lively and stony. From mountain vineyards in Sonoma and Mount Veeder. Nice debut wine. Drink or hold."
Far Mountain is based on the belief that some of the greatest potential for wine in California – and anywhere in the world – exists in remote pockets in the mountains of the Sonoma Valley. The growers the winery works with have taken decades of risks in both planting their vineyards and the farming choices they make today. The winery’s work is to channel the drama of these surroundings into wines that dazzle with energy and stand out immediately. Wines that bring a sheer pleasure in their flavors and textures, as well as unfold slowly, with never ending detail and fascination. It is a specific vision, literally chiseled by the landscape.
Antica Chardonnay Napa Valley is made by one of the greatest Tuscan wineries: Antinori. Known for their Super Tuscans, this California estate wine lives up to their greatly deserved reputation with this lovely Burgundian style Chardonnay.
98 points - limited
Arista is one of California's leading Chardonnay and Pinot Noir producers under the helm of winemaker Matt Courtney (Marcassin, Ferren), Limited.
previous vintage 98 Points Jeb Dunnuck: "From one of the Grand Cru sites in the Russian River, the Arista Chardonnay Ritchie Vineyard saw the standard 12 months in one-third new French oak followed by six months in stainless steel. Buttered pineapple, nectarines, honeyed flowers, almond paste, toasted bread, and honeysuckle notes all emerge from the glass, and this beauty is full-bodied on the palate and flawlessly balanced. The purity of fruit is just about off the charts, and it has good acidity as well as a great mid-palate. This quintessential Russian River Chardonnay shows the classic power and richness of this appellation while also possessing freshness, elegance, and balance. Hats off to Matt Courtney for another tremendous wine....With the wines made by Matt Courtney, this Russian River estate continues to make some of the best wines in the vintage."
95 Points Robert Parker: "The Arista Chardonnay Ritchie Vineyard is a stunning wine. It offers singular aromas of guava, grapefruit peel and musky hints with layers of tangerine, green herbs, crushed stone and hints of elderflower. The medium-bodied palate is very expressive with kaleidoscopic flavor layers and addicting juiciness, finishing long and ever-changing in the mouth. This is a flamboyant expression that can be drunk immediately or cellared for a few years."
100 points - limited
* Rare Magnum (1.5L) bottle* - Limited new release from cult Chardonnay producer Mark Aubert.
100 Points Robert Parker: "Aubert noted that this is his coolest site and usually the last to be harvested. Located near the Hyde Estate winery, by virtue of chilly afternoon breezes, it is indeed among the coolest sites on the Napa side of the Los Carneros AVA. This section is planted to Corton-Charlemagne clone on St. George rootstock. A barrel sample, it is being aged in 50% new French oak barrels... Whoa—the Aubert Chardonnay Larry Hyde & Sons explodes from the glass with bombastic scents of sea spray, freshly shaved ginger, lemon curd and grapefruit plus emerging hints of green guava, lime cordial and coriander seed with a waft of struck flint. Full-bodied, rich and lively, the palate is remarkably fruity and yet possesses loads of mineral sparks and savory nuances, finishing very long and spicy. This vintage no doubt played to the strengths of this site beautifully in 2019, delivering a very impressive wine of amazing singularity and intensity."
...Mark Aubert continues to set the bar incredibly high for the world-class quality of his Burgundian-styled, remarkable Chardonnays, which come from relatively cool sites spread from Rutherford in Napa Valley to the far reaches of the Sonoma Coast. As I indicated last year, Aubert is at the top of his game, and it is hard to believe any Chardonnay winemaker in the world is turning out a half-dozen Chardonnays at this qualitative level year in and year out. He has had an incredible run of great success, after being mentored by none other than the reclusive and supremely talented Helen Turley when he took over the winemaking job at Peter Michael, then proceeded on to impressive sojourns at Colgin Estate as well as Tom Futo’s winery in Oakville."