Aubert Sugar Shack Estate Chardonnay 2012
Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
Initial aromatics truly reflect the site and winemaking with dried lemon peel, citrus blossom and buttered pecans. The clonal pedigree layers undertones of green tea and crushed rocks. The unique structure of this Chardonnay is focused with powerful length on the palate.
The Wine Advocate - "From a 5-acre Rutherford vineyard planted with the Montrachet clone, the prodigious 2012 Chardonnay Sugar Shack Estate (400 cases) exhibits notes of liquid stones, tangerine oil, peach blossom and a hint of pineapples with staggering minerality. Full-bodied with sensational purity, texture and richness, it was hard to spit this one out. It will age effortlessly for 10+ years. "
Wine Spectator - "Offers rich, deep, persistent flavors built around ripe apple, fig, honeysuckle and smoky oak notes that fill in the gaps on the finish. A new offering from Aubert. Drink now through 2021. 385 cases made."
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "One of the more explosive wines in the range, the 2012 Chardonnay Sugar Shack hits the palate with tons of depth and pure body. Readers who can put the wine aside for a few years should do so, as today the structure and intensity of the fruit are both incredibly intense. The style is rich, tropical, honeyed and voluptuous to the core. Sugar Shack emerges from a site in Rutherford, just outside St. Helena, planted by David Abreu with a Montrachet clone. This is the same wine that was labeled as Napa Valley in 2011. The vines are now seven years old. There is every reason to think the best lies ahead."
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Owner/winemaker Mark Aubert has had a distinguished winemaking career including a 12 year stint at Peter Michael where he followed Helen Turley. Aubert succeeded Turley again several years later at Colgin Cellars. He has been a winemaking consultant for several prestigious wineries including Sloan, Bryant and Futo. He crafts outstanding vineyard-designate Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs from estate and leased vineyards in the Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast in a full-blown hedonistic style. The first wines were released with the 2000 vintage. Ulises Valdez is Aubert's vineyard manager. Until 2008, the two Pinot Noirs have been from the Reuling Vineyard and UV Vineyard, both located in the Sonoma Coast AVA. A new estate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir vineyard has been planted adjacent Reuling, 4 acres of Pinot Noir were planted at Ritchie Vineyard in 2008, and 9 acres of Pinot Noir have been planted at a new site high above the town of Occidental. In 2008, there were six different single vineyard Chardonnays and five Pinot Noir wines. View all Aubert Wines
About Sonoma CountyRelated 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 unto 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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