Pahlmeyer Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2013
Pahlmeyer was founded in 1986, by a desire to be great by its eponymous creator Jayson Pahlmeyer. With a dream to create a California Mouton, Jayson and his partners spared no resource to make this dream a reality. Whether it was finding the perfect piece of land high atop Napa Valley’s Atlas Peak or covertly smuggling in Bordeaux cuttings, all pieces of Pahlmeyer’s history have led to its place as one of the top brand names from Napa Valley. From the very beginning, Pahlmeyer has been dedicated to crafting fine wines from the best fruit sources possible. In California, this means high elevation mountain sites, where the grapes are afforded more sunlight, cooler temperatures, and less fertile soils, which together create ideal conditions. Pahlmeyer sources the majority of their fruit from four key locations: Pahlmeyer Estate (Atlas Peak), Stagecoach (Atlas Peak / Pritchard Hill), Rancho Chimiles, and Antica.
A vast appellation covering Sonoma County’s Pacific coastline, the Sonoma Coast AVA runs all the way from the Mendocino County border, south to the San Pablo Bay. The region can actually be divided into two sections—the actual coastal vineyards, marked by marine soils, cool temperatures and saline ocean breezes—and the warmer, drier vineyards further inland, which are still heavily influenced by the Pacific but not quite with same intensity.
Contained within the appellation are the much smaller Fort Ross-Seaview and Petaluma Gap AVAs.
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.