*Editors' Choice* This 100% varietal wine from the cooler outpost of Freestone is so deliciously crisp, bright in minerally lemon and fresh pear. It lingers on the palate in complex ways, elusive one moment, then exuberant the next-a celebration of ideal vintage and place.
There’s a taut and penetrating depth of flavor at the core of this chardonnay, from a wind-cooled vineyard among the redwoods near Freestone. It’s resolutely dry, with a tangy blood-orange verve, the grip of oak and creaminess of lees providing a context for the clean intensity of the fruit. Decant it for veal.
The 2013 Chardonnay Freestone Vineyard, which saw 100% malolactic and spent 13 months in about one-third new oak, is a large cuvée of 5,700 cases. The wine shows beautiful floral notes intermixed with citrus and honeysuckle, has great natural acidity and a hint of wet rocks giving it minerality and crisp, medium-bodied, nicely concentrated flavors. It reminded me of a premier cru Chablis. Drink it over the next 4-5 years. (RP)
The 2013 Chardonnay Freestone Vineyard is quite pretty, but it is very tight today, most likely the result of its recent bottling. Lemon curd, chamomile and white pepper blossom in this expressive Chardonnay. These new and upcoming releases from Joseph Phelps's Sonoma Coast property are quite attractive. The 2012s have turned out nicely. I was quite surprised to see just how rich the 2012 Pinots are. In that sense, they are markedly different in style from the generally more perfumed, mid-weight Pinots that typically emerge from this part of the coast. The 2013s have a little more energy and delineation than the 2013s. Phelps opted to bottle the 2013s earlier than the 2012s, which meant I saw them just after bottling. (AG)
Mixed lemon with grapefruit accents and integrated spice carried on rushing acidity and an ultra-long finish. Judicious use of oak without heaviness gives breadth to an otherwise lean, mineral palate. (ECB)
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