Duckhorn Napa Valley Chardonnay 2017 Front Label
Duckhorn Napa Valley Chardonnay 2017 Front LabelDuckhorn Napa Valley Chardonnay 2017  Front Bottle Shot

Duckhorn Napa Valley Chardonnay 2017

  • JS93
  • WW91
  • RP91
  • WE91
750ML / 14.1% ABV
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4.4 26 Ratings
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4.4 26 Ratings
750ML / 14.1% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The fantastic 2017 growing season yielded an intense and complex expression of Napa Valley Chardonnay, with alluring aromas of nectarine, yellow plum, pineapple upsidedown cake, and sweet spices. On the palate, zesty acidity and an underlying silkiness add depth and nuance, with French oak-inspired hints of vanilla, sweet dough and clove framing the generous fruit.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 93
James Suckling

A delicious chardonnay with sliced cooked apples and subtle vanilla and cream on the nose and palate. Hints of toffee and butterscotch, too. Full-bodied and compact. Racy finish. Very serious. Drink or hold.

WW 91
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
COMMENTARY: When I first tasted my first vintages of California Chardonnays—vintages 1968 to 1970, I was astounded with the wines' qualities. Historic houses like Heitz, Hanzell, Stony Hill, and others left an indelible mark on my palate. As the California industry grew, Chardonnays got lost a bit. Wineries picked the grapes later and used plenty of oak. My friend and colleague Bob Thompson—one of the world's greatest wine writers—often said, "I wasn't raised to drink a tree." The battle between purity and commercial viability became endless. Fortunately, the 2017 Duckhorn Chardonnay figured it out and produced a wine that hits all of the right points of balance. TASTING NOTES: This wine is generous without sacrificing purity or style. Its aromas and flavors of dried peach, apple, and oak accents are perfectly balanced. Pair it with shellfish in a decadent cream sauce. (Tasted: April 11, 2019, San Francisco, CA)
RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

The 2017 Chardonnay features bright, youthful grapefruit, fresh lemons and pineapple notes with touches of baking bread and allspice. Medium-bodied, elegant and refreshing, it has a silken texture and bags of citrus flavors, finishing spicy.

WE 91
Wine Enthusiast

Flavors of crème brûlée, mango and pineapple give this wine a boost of richness and texture on the palate. It remains lush and lemony as it opens in the glass, with a thread of structured acidity beckoning on the finish.

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Duckhorn

Duckhorn Vineyards

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Duckhorn Vineyards, California
Duckhorn Vineyards Winery Video

Founded in 1976, Duckhorn Vineyards has been crafting Bordeaux varietals from the Napa Valley for over 30 years. This winemaking tradition has grown to include seven estate vineyards, located throughout the various microclimates of the Napa Valley. Focused on quality and consistency, these estate vineyards are an essential element in making wines of distinction.

One of the first wineries to pioneer Merlot as a premium varietal, Duckhorn Vineyards now makes several elegant Merlot and distinctive Cabernet Sauvignon bottlings to showcase the characteristics of its vineyard sites. In addition, the winery is known for its acclaimed Sauvignon Blanc. Beginning with the 2006 vintage, Duckhorn Vineyards unveiled The Discussion, a Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend that represents the pinnacle of Duckhorn's portfolio.

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960s, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.

The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980s, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Napa whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those are the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth reds with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.

SOU916504_2017 Item# 520331

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