Outstanding, the 2011 Chardonnay Sierra Mar Vineyard, which was harvested September 29 and aged in 45% new and the balance 1-year-old French oak, is the most mineral-driven of the Chardonnays and, to my mind, is a cross between the richness found in the Soberanes and the acidity and freshness in the Rosella’s Vineyard. Offering up lovely golden apple, lemon, crushed stone, spice and subtle sweet oak, it hits the palate with a medium-bodied mouthfeel, beautiful overall balance and a fresh, focused finish. Possessing ample acidity, it will be even better in another 6-12 months and have a 5-6 years of drinkability, if not longer. (JD)
Bright gold. Musky pear skin and Meyer lemon scents are complemented by notes of vanilla and anise, with a smoky nuance coming up with aeration. Fleshy and expansive on the palate, offering ripe pear and nectarine flavors that are lifted and braced by juicy acidity. Closes smooth, smoky and long, with slow-building spiciness and a hint of iodine. Distinctly rich but very energetic. (JR)
Intense, with a coarse edge to the green apple, honeysuckle, floral and spicy scents. The wood is evident, adding flavor and texture to the strong and persistent finish. Best from 2014 through 2022. (JL)
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2013 Solomon Hills "Solomon Hills Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay (Previously $40)