Gary Farrell makes some of the finest Chardonnay and Pinot Noirs coming out of the Russian RIver Valley. Highly recommended.95 Points - limited
95 Points Wine Enthusiast "Editor's Choice": "This wine offers such tremendous value and quality - it should be on everyone’s go-to list for Russian River Valley Chardonnay. Lime, fig and grapefruit rind flavors ride along a lifted character of crushed stone texture and bright acidity. This wine is impressive from the detailed start to the lengthy finish."
The Gary Farrell Russian River Ranches is a layered and complex Chardonnay that brings together fruit from several of the winery's favorite Russian River Valley vineyard sites. Anchored by the naturally balanced character of Westside Farms and intriguing floral and stone fruit notes from Bacigalupi Vineyard, the wine's great concentration and structure derive from the nearby Rochioli and Allen vineyards. Olivet Lane Vineyard, featuring the Wente clone, adds refreshing citrus tones and excellent acidity.
This California Chardonnay 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."