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Fort Ross Vineyard Chardonnay 2013

Chardonnay from Fort Ross-Seaview, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
  • WW90
13.5% ABV
  • RP94
  • WW93
  • WS90
  • RP94
  • WE92
  • WW92
  • WS90
  • RP94
  • CG91
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13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The hazy pale gold hue is evidence of subtle stirring of the lees and bottling without fining or filtration. The decadent texture and layers of intense fruit finely intertwine with the vibrant acidity and minerality characteristic of the Fort Ross Vineyard's coastal terroir. Bright aromas of white flowers, apple blossom, and zesty citrus mingle with hints of marzipan and brioche to captivate the senses. Tiers of white peach and autumnal pear evolve on the broad palate leading to the crisp, expansive finish.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 90
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
A super-solid effort, the 2013 Fort Ross Chardonnay is from a cool new AVA (1/13/12), Fort Ross-Seaview, that was established after 10 years of in-fighting, the AVA is a part of the "true" Sonoma Coast! Medium straw color, alluring aromas of ripe peach and apple skin, with a suggestion of cream, excellent depth and purity, surely benefited from its oak interplay; medium bodied, layered on the palate, with a solid firmness; dry, medium acidity, well balanced; fine ripe fruit and sweet cream in the flavors; medium to long finish, layered aftertaste. (Tasted: August 24, 2015, San Francisco, CA)
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Fort Ross Vineyard

Fort Ross Vineyard

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Fort Ross Vineyard, Fort Ross-Seaview, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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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.

Fort Ross-Seaview

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On the far western edge of the larger Sonoma Coast appellation, the Fort Ross-Seaview AVA hugs right up against the Pacific coast. Vineyards, planted at rugged elevations between 920 to 1,800 feet, occupy only two percent of the total land in the AVA. Fort Ross-Seaview growers believe that the region boasts an ideal mix of sunshine, cool air and beneficial stress for producing high quality Chardonnay and Pinot noir.

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.

MSW30144642_2013 Item# 140383