Fort Ross Chardonnay 2009
Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
This golden Chardonnay finely balances layers of intense fruit with the natural acidity and minerality characteristic of the Fort Ross coastal climate. Generous aromas of white flowers, autumnal pear and honeydew melon lead a complex palate of succulent apricot, sweet peaches with a drop of honey and spiced hazelnuts. Bottled unfined and unfiltered contributes to the seamless silky texture and lengthy focused finish.
Wine Enthusiast - "A brilliant Chardonnay. Almost nothing quite like it out there. Great, zesty acidity makes the mouth water, and oak is strongly there but perfectly vindicated by the power of the underlying flavors. They suggest ripe pineapples and tropical fruits, peaches, honeysuckle and a firm, stony minerality that has to come from the soil. For all the richness, the wine is terrifically dry."
Wine Spectator - "Fragrant peach, honeysuckle, hazelnut and spice notes join a touch of anise. Smooth, rich and creamy, this glides along gracefully."
Fort Ross Winery
Nestled on a sunny coastal ridge, overlooking the Pacific Ocean a mile below, Fort Ross'"True Sonoma Coast" vineyard is one of the closest, if not the closest, to the ocean in all of California. From the vineyard you can see the breaking surf and the misty silhouettes of Bodega Head and Pt. Reyes far below. The vineyard's high elevation above the coastal fog and its proximity to the ocean provide a gentle, sunny and temperate climate that has proved to be very favorable for the slow and even ripening of Burgundian varietals. View all Fort Ross Wines
About Sonoma CountyView a map of Sonoma County wineriesRelated Links:
Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about half as much wine as its northeasterly neighbor. Because of its vast size, however, Sonoma is able to achieve far more diversity within its borders, which include sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid-back and down-to-earth, but the wines are serious and well-made, ranging in style from subtle and elegant to rich and powerful. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
Notable FactsThe largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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