Lively, aromatic toasty oak is evident throughout, giving the vibrant pear, citrus, green apple and honeydew flavors a nice accent. Picks up body and depth, delivering a wonderful encore for the finish. (JL) (Web Only - 2016)
Orange blossom, mint, wild flowers and lightly tropical fruit open up in the 2013 Chardonnay. Rich, plus and beautifully layered throughout, the 2013 possesses dazzling texture through to the ample, creamy finish. Just as impressive from bottle as it was from barrel, the 2013 is a real knock-out. I walk into John Kongsgaard's barn-like winery on a late September afternoon just as the early dawn sets in over the hills of Atlas Peak. The first thing I see among the clutter of equipment is a photo of composer Gustav Mahler taped to one of the tanks. I ask Kongsgaard if he can put something on as I set up my computer and get settled in. His choice? The last movement of the 9th Symphony. Wow. Talk about going for it all. But that's exactly how Kongsgaard's wines are; bold, dramatic and full of ebbs and flows. The music goes off and the wines go on, and they are fabulous. In 2014, the wines are intensely mineral and savory. The 2013s are much more opulent. Both vintages look like they will be slow to mature. (AG)
The 2013 Chardonnay, which is already in bottle, displays nectarine, tangerine oil, crushed rock, earthy, full-bodied richness, and magnificent texture and length. This is just a stunner to drink over the next decade or so. One of the great wine producers in Napa Valley, John Kongsgaard first worked at Newton winery, where he had been taught well by the world guru in winemaking, Michel Rolland. When he went out on his own, he developed a strong relationship with the Hudson family and now produces fruit from specially planted clones in the Hudson Vineyard, while also maintaining his own estate on Atlas Peak in Coombsville. All of his wines are unfined, unfiltered, singular in style, and often some of the most expressive and remarkable wines in Napa Valley. Talking to John Kongsgaard is akin to talking to some medieval wizard or mystic, but it all makes sense. (RP)
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