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Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay 2009

Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
  • RP89
13.5% ABV
  • WE91
  • WE91
  • WS91
  • WE91
  • WS88
  • WE88
  • RP89
  • RP90
  • RP89
  • RP89
  • RP89
  • RP87
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3.2 6 Ratings
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3.2 6 Ratings
13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Beautifully integrated tropical flavors such as pineapple, mango, and papaya with citrus notes that explode in your mouth. These flavors delicately intertwine with aromas of vanilla and honey to create depth and balance throughout. A hint of toasted oak rounds out the long, lingering finish.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 89
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
There are several million cases of the 2009 Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay (100% estate grown Chardonnay that is, remarkably, 100% barrel fermented), which comes primarily from Jess Jackson’s coastal properties in Monterey and Santa Barbara. Winemaker Randy Ullom told me he manages to stir the lees on all the barrels once a month, which is astonishing. Abundant aromas of white peach, honeysuckle, green apple skins and a hint of tropical fruits jump from the glass of this medium-bodied, crisp, dry, fruity, well-made Chardonnay. It is a sensational bargain.
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Kendall-Jackson

Kendall-Jackson

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Kendall-Jackson, Sonoma County, California
Video of winery

Back in 1974, Jess Jackson saw in the fine vineyards of California's cool coastal regions fruit with a variety of outstanding flavors. What if there was a way to produce from this abundance, a single outstanding "cuvée" that offered both quality and value? The result, first released in 1983, was Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay, a rich, round and flavorful wine, made with hand-crafted methods. That same year, Grand Reserve was introduced, a line of ultra-premium wines that represented the full potential of California's finest vineyards and winemaking.

Today, over 5,000 acres of vineyard in California's coastal regions are farmed by Kendall-Jackson. Four separate wineries house what is possibly the single largest barrel-fermentation project in the world. But perhaps most important, is that Kendall-Jackson remains a family-owned winery.

Sonoma County

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Home to a diverse array of smaller AVAs with varied microclimates and soil types, Sonoma County has something for every wine lover. Physically twice as large as Napa Valley, the region only produces about half the amount of wine but boasts both tremendous quality and variety. With its laid-back atmosphere and down-to-earth attitude, the wineries of Sonoma are appreciated by wine tourists for their friendliness and approachability. The entire county intends to become a 100% sustainable winegrowing region by 2019.

Grape varieties are carefully selected to reflect the best attributes of their sites—Dry Creek Valley’s consistent sunshine is ideal for Zinfandel, while the warm Alexander Valley is responsible for rich, voluptuous Cabernet Sauvignon. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are important throughout the county, most notably in the cooler AVAs of Russian River, Sonoma Coast and Carneros. Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah have also found a firm footing here.

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.

EMP74285_2009 Item# 107112