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Patz & Hall Dutton Ranch Chardonnay 2012

Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
  • RP94
0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

The long, cool 2012 growing season allowed us to achieve perfect ripeness, and to pick exactly when we wished. This, combined with superb viticulture on the part of the Duttons, has produced one of the most successful Chardonnays in our history with Dutton Ranch. The aromas showcase high-toned tropical and Muscat-like notes alongside lovely layers of white flower and citrus peel. On the palate, the texture is plush and mouthfilling, with flavors that echo the aromas. French oak-inspired notes of hazelnut, graham cracker and spicy clove, as well as a hint of campfire smoke, add sophistication to the mid-palate. From start to finish, this is a complex and impeccably balanced wine that concludes with lingering ripe fruit.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Another brilliant wine, which is no surprise, is the 2012 Chardonnay Dutton Ranch. With a light-greenish hue to the light-gold color, the wine has loads of tropical fruits, such as pineapple, mango and orange marmalade, followed by honeysuckle, a hint of hazelnut and a full-bodied, well-endowed, beautifully crafted Chardonnay with underlying stony minerality.
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Patz & Hall

Patz & Hall

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Patz & Hall, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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Patz and Hall Wine Company was founded in 1988 by Donald Patz, James Hall, Anne Moses and Heather Patz, and is dedicated to the production of hand-crafted wines. The four are long-time Napa Valley residents and wine industry professionals, with a wide variety of experiences. Patz and Hall produces Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines from selected vineyard sources in Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino and Monterey counties. The Patz and Hall method is to work closely with each of their growers to achieve a unique expression of the vineyard site and deliver wines that reflect both the site and their vision for great wine.
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Russian River

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A standout region for its decidedly Californian take on Burgundian varieties, the Russian River Valley is named for the eponymous river that flows through it. While there are warm pockets of the AVA, it is mostly a cool-climate growing region thanks to breezes and fog from the nearby Pacific Ocean.

Chardonnay and Pinot Noir reign supreme in Russian River, with the best examples demonstrating a unique combination of richness and restraint. The cool weather makes Russian River an ideal AVA for sparkling wine production, utilizing the aforementioned varieties. Zinfandel also performs exceptionally well here. Within the Russian River Valley lie the smaller appellations of Chalk Hill and Green Valley. The former, farther from the ocean, is relatively warm, with a focus on red and white Bordeaux varieties. The latter is the coolest, foggiest parcel of the Russian River Valley and is responsible for outstanding Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

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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 is grown and how it is made. While practically every country in the wine producing world grows it, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. As far as cellar potential, white Burgundy rivals the world’s other age-worthy whites like Riesling or botrytized Semillon. California is Chardonnay’s second most important home, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia and South America are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

In the Glass

When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay flavors tend towards grapefruit, lemon zest, green apple, celery leaf and wet flint, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of melon, peach and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut and spice, while malolactic fermentation imparts a soft and creamy texture.

Perfect Pairings

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with flaky white fish with herbs, scallops, turkey breast and soft cheeses. Richer Chardonnays marry well with lobster, crab, salmon, roasted chicken and creamy 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. In Burgundy, the subregion of Chablis, while typically employing the use of older oak barrels, produces a similar bright and acid-driven style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy its lighter style.

ULL675003_12_2012 Item# 129185