The 2013 Chardonnay Stone Cote Vineyard (572 cases produced) is fashioned from a specific block of vines that Don Hartford farms in the well-known Durell Vineyard. Fermented with indigenous yeast, it exhibits lots of white peach, orange blossom, pear and honeysuckle notes in its medium to full-bodied, gorgeously pure, textured personality. With terrific acidity as well as focus, it should drink well for 10+ years. Part of the Jackson Family empire, Hartford Court is run with incredible enthusiasm and competence by Don Hartford and his winemaker, Jeff Stewart. One of the bright shining stars in California winedom, their Chardonnays are clearly Burgundian, but with sensational purity and ripeness. The Pinot Noirs are among the finest of Northern California, and Hartford Court’s Zinfandels rank alongside such top Zinfandel producers as Turley, Limerick Lane and Carlisle. I tasted six impressive 2013 Chardonnays, which are generally aged for 15 months in 100% French oak, with a range of 33% to 44% new. Bottling is done without fining or filtration. (RP)
The 2013 Chardonnay Stone Cote Vineyard (from Durell) is rich, sumptuous and layered, with attractive floral, honeyed overtones and plenty of orchard fruits. Hints of orange peel, lemon oil, hazelnuts, spices and butter add further dimensions of nuance on the finish. The 2013 stands out for its voluptuous, inviting personality and silky finish. It’s hard to know where to start with this superb set of new and upcoming releases from Don Hartford and Jeff Stewart. The Chardonnays and Pinots get most of the attention, but the Zinfandels, most of which emerge from 100 year-old vineyards, may very well be the most impressed wines in this range. The Chardonnays are all fermented and aged in barrel (around 33%-60% new) for 15 months and bottled with no fining or filtration. Pretty much the same is true of the Pinots, which perhaps see a touch less new oak than the Chardonnays. The Zinfandels are made in a distinctly Pinot-influenced style that emphasizes aromatics and silkiness. (AG)
Marked by a strong show of citrus, quince, lemon, lime and white peach notes that give this a mouthwatering presence. (JL, Web-2016)
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