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Rodney Strong Chalk Hill Chardonnay 1999

Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
  • WE87
  • WW89
  • WW90
  • RP90
  • W&S91
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Winemaker Notes

The 1999 Chalk Hill Chardonnay exemplifies what happens when a winemaker patiently waits out the bad weather and hopes for better conditions. High temperatures in October allowed grapes to ripen to full maturity and excellent flavor development. Fully expressive of the struggle of the harvest year, our Chalk Hill Chardonnay displays a medium rich texture with flavors in abundance. Grapefruit and Asian pear flavors are delicately touched with essence of lavender. A bouquet of granny smith apples and fresh cut Hawaiian pineapple intermingle with hints of nutmeg and wet granite. Barrel aging in predominately French Oak barrels and a nice crisp balance serve as the framework for this luxurious wine. I look forward to serving this wine with a rich soup of Butternut Squash or a pasta with smoked salmon and a creamy dill sauce. -Rick Sayre, Winemaker

Critical Acclaim

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WE 87
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Rodney Strong

Rodney Strong Vineyards

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Rodney Strong Vineyards, , California
Rodney Strong
Founded by wine industry pioneer, Rod Strong, in 1959, Rodney Strong Vineyards is now owned by the Kleins, a farming-based family that prides itself on land stewardship and a relentless push for superior wine quality from Sonoma County. After purchasing the company in 1989, Tom Klein began the endeavor that today brings together excellent vineyards, the industry's finest winemaking equipment, and exceptional talent. The winery farms and sources grapes from vineyards throughout Sonoma County, focusing on Alexander Valley, Russian River Valley and Chalk Hill. Rodney Strong Vineyards is best known for its estate-bottled and vinyeard-designated wines, and is also recognized for their sustainable and Fish Friendly Farming, dedication to solar energy production and coming carbon neutral in 2009.

A picturesque Mediterranean nation with a rich wine culture dating back to ancient times, Greece has so much more to offer than just retsina. Between the mainland and the country’s many islands, a wealth of wine styles exist, made mostly from Greece’s plentiful indigenous varieties. Still suffering for centuries after Ottoman rule, the modern wine industry did not truly begin here until the late 20th century, after a mass influx of newly trained winemakers and investments in winemaking technology. The climate—generally hot Mediterranean—can vary a bit with latitude and elevation, and is often moderated by cool maritime breezes. Drought can be an issue during the long, dry summers, often necessitating irrigation.

Over 300 indigenous grapes have been identified throughout Greece, and though not all of them are suitable for wine production, future decades will likely see a significant revival of many of these native varieties. Assyrtiko, the crisp, saline variety of the island of Santorini, is one of the most important and popular white varieties, alongside Roditis, Robola, Moschofilero, and Malagousia. Muscat is also widely grown for both sweet and dry wines. Prominent red varieties include soft and fruity Agiorghitiko, native to Nemea; Macedonia’s savory, tannic Xinomavro; and Mavrodaphne, used commonly to produce a Port-like fortified wine in the Peloponnese.

Other Red Blends

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With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to create complex wines with many different layers of flavors and aromas, or to create more balanced wines. For example, a variety that is soft and full-bodied may be combined with one that is lighter with naturally high acidity. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

NDV313144_1999 Item# 23075

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