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Flowers Camp Meeting Ridge Chardonnay 2013

Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
  • WW92
  • W&S91
13.3% ABV
  • WE93
  • WE94
  • W&S95
  • WS92
  • WE92
  • W&S94
  • WS92
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3.9 11 Ratings
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3.9 11 Ratings
13.3% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Brilliant golden hue. Lively aromas of lemon verbena, lime zest, honey suckle, chamomile, and citrus blossom dominate the distinctive nose. The palate is precise and focused, driven by mouthwatering acidity and framed by flinty, coastal minerality– a vivid expression of the Estate vineyard.

Sourced entirely from Flowers' organic and biodynamically farmed Camp Meeting Ridge Estate Vineyard. Planted in 1991, these "older" vines are producing their most exciting and interesting Chardonnays to date. Given the extremes of this site, each small block ripens at its own pace. Picked by hand in the foggy frigidness of night, fruit integrity and temperature were ensured for a whole cluster pressing by sunrise.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 92
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
A multi-faceted wine, the excellent 2013 Flowers Chardonnay Camp Meeting Ridge is one of California's most beautiful and serious efforts. Deep yellow in color; complex aromas of rich apples and bright lemon curd, some oak and creaminess stays nicely in the background; medium bodied, with fine persistence; dry, fine acidity, well balanced; wild flavors of dried citrus, attractive savory spices and sweet oak; long finish, fine mineral bite in the aftertaste. Drinks nicely now and will absolutely grow in complexity over the next several years. (Tasted: March 21, 2016)
W&S 91
Wine & Spirits
At first this seems like a rather obvious chardonnay, with stereotypical notes of oak and sumptuous warmth. A day of air shows the pedigree of the fruit, which comes from organically farmed vines planted in 1991 on a ridge two miles from the Pacific coast. Oxygen takes its generous ripeness toward earthen power, expressed through the appetizing spice of turmeric and a savory richness that one taster compared to duck fat. Age it for a few years, then decant it for crab or grilled king trumpet mushrooms.
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Flowers

Flowers Vineyard & Winery

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Flowers Vineyard & Winery, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
2013 Camp Meeting Ridge Chardonnay
As nursery owners in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Walt and Joan Flowers had long dreamed of combining their love of wine with their passion for agriculture. They knew they wanted to produce their favorite varietals, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir; what they didn't know what that their path would eventually lead them across the country to Northern California's rugged Sonoma Coast. In 1989, Walt and Joan purchased 321 acres, including a ridge top, high above the Pacific Ocean on the northern Sonoma Coast. Today, Flowers Winery produces Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from its two estate properties, Camp Meeting Ridge Vineyard and Sea View Ridge Vineyard, as well as select vineyards in the coolest regions of the Sonoma Coast AVA, which are famed to Flowers' specifications by their own crews.

Sonoma Coast

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A vast appellation covering Sonoma County’s Pacific coastline, the Sonoma Coast AVA runs from the San Pablo Bay to the Mendocino County border. The region can actually be divided into two sections—the “true” Sonoma Coast, marked by high rainfall, marine soils, cool temperatures, and saline ocean breezes, from which one can actually see the ocean—and the warmer, drier vineyards further inland, creating a diversity of wine styles. Contained within the appellation is the much smaller and more focused Fort Ross-Seaview AVA.

Sonoma Coast is highly regarded for elegant Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and, increasingly, cool-climate Syrah, with high acidity, moderate alcohol, firm tannin, and fruit that is rarely overripe. One of the most favorable sites within the region is the Petaluma Gap, where a break in the coastal mountain range allows Pacific winds and fog to funnel through and cool the vineyards.

Chardonnay

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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’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

In the Glass

When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.

Perfect Pairings

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based sauces.

Sommelier Secret

Since the 1990s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has begun to swing in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.

SWS405914_2013 Item# 155381

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