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Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Chardonnay 2008

Chardonnay from Napa Valley, California
  • WS87
  • WE87
14.5% ABV
  • WE90
  • WE88
  • RP90
  • WE90
  • WS87
  • RP87
  • WS88
  • RP87
  • WE85
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3.0 1 Ratings
14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This vivid and crisp Chardonnay draws orchard aromas of fresh Bosc pears and Gala apples against a backdrop of fleshy stone fruits and pineapple. A stripe of exotic spices, including notes of nutmeg and cinnamon, gives way to subtle aromas of panna cotta and warm hazelnuts. Persistent on the palate, this wine gracefully balances the toast of its well-integrated oak with bright fresh fruit flavors for a round, lingering finish that is typical of the Carneros terroir.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 87
Wine Spectator
Offers a modest mix of spicy pear, melon and apple flavors that are delicate and refined, ending with a clean, minerally aftertaste. Drink now through 2013. 60,000 cases made.
WE 87
Wine Enthusiast
Soft and creamy, with flavors of buttered toast, pineapple marmalade and candy corn. Made in the ripe, oaky, drink-me-now modern style.
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Robert Mondavi

Robert Mondavi

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Robert Mondavi, Napa Valley, California
2008 Napa Valley Chardonnay
For more than 40 years, Robert Mondavi Winery has been the symbol of Napa Valley. Founded in 1966, it was the first major winery built in Napa Valley in the three decades following the repeal of Prohibition (1933), and went on to establish the foundation for modern California winemaking. Robert Mondavi Winery's mission-styled architecture, with the expansive archway and bell tower designed by Cliff May, has become an enduring landmark that honors California's history. With the philosophy that great wines reflect their origins, Robert Mondavi Winery pursues the fullest expression of the terroir of its Napa Valley vineyards: the historic To Kalon Vineyard in the Oakville American Viticultural Area (AVA), and the Wappo Hill Vineyard in the Stags Leap Vineyard AVA.

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production and tourism, the Napa Valley is the AVA that brought worldwide recognition to California winemaking. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two are St.-Helena and the valley's newest AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap District, and Mt. Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.


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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.

MNC8358F_2008 Item# 108460