2017 Diatom "Katherine's" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay SKU #1377889

Price: $29.95

JD 94 VN 94 RP 92
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Professional Reviews

K&L Notes

Winemaker's Notes: "Sourced from forty-eight-year-old, self-rooted vines in the north west corner of Cambria’s Santa Maria Estate. The 2017 Katherine’s parcel is rooted in gravelly loam soils heavily influenced by the pronounced maritime influence of the nearby Pacific. In the cellar the fermentation is completed at a very low temperature in small stainless-steel tanks, coupled with inhibited malo-lactic and short hose transit ensure precision and focus. Diatom is motivated by the pursuit of subtraction and refinement. It is the polishing of a grain of rice until one has reached its ultimate inner core. Our Sta. Rita Hills marine landscape is stark and so are the wines of its provenance. We strive for a recognition of place with as little disturbance, distraction or interference as possible. The resulting wines have a sense of transparency and a purity of intent and purpose."

Staff Reviews

  • Stephanie Vidales
    By: Stephanie Vidales
    K&L Staff Member
    This is not your typical California Chardonnay. Focused with minerality and bright acid, Diatom truly shows its terroir of gravely soils, old vines and maritime climate. There is generous citrus and tropical character on the nose intertwined with subtle spice. On the palate the fruit is ripe, but with incredible salinity and wet rock to offer balance. This is a serious wine that would pair great with fresh seafood and light dishes.
  • Robert Cash
    By: Robert Cash
    K&L Staff Member
    This is an extraordinarily elegant, focused Chardonnay of grace and structure. The marine influence on the vineyards is subtly present on the nose as well as the palate. The nose offers up a plethora of citrus and tropical fruit aromas that seem endless. With no oak and no malo in the way, the quality of fruit and winemaking skill shines forth with minerality and a great acid structure. Medium bodied on the palate with a generous mouthfeel and long finish. This is a wine of tremendous quality!
  • Ryan Woodhouse
    By: Ryan Woodhouse
    K&L Staff Member
    An absolutely stunning, pure, refined, Chardonnay. This perfectly illustrates just how compelling California Chardonnay can be with all the wine making artifact peeled away. Greg Brewer's Diatom project aims to reduce any outside factor's impact on the expression of the vineyard site. The wine is fermented entirely in stainless steel, no malo, very minimal intervention. He simply wants to capture the sense of place conveyed by these 48 year old own-rooted vines. And capture it he has! Intense stony minerality, racy acidity, juicy citrus fruits, weight and texture cling to this focused and linear style. It has incredible length and persistence on the palate. Reminds me very much of fine Chablis with it's almost incomprehensible combination of weightlessness and power, intensity and precision. One of the best value white wines in the store.


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