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Rochioli Estate Chardonnay 2015

Chardonnay from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
  • WE91
  • WS90
14.5% ABV
  • WE94
  • JD90
  • RP91
  • WE90
  • WE93
  • WS91
  • RP91
  • W&S93
  • WE92
  • WS90
  • WS93
  • WE94
  • RP90
  • WS91
  • WE90
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This wine is a fine example of the unique characteristics from the Rochioli property and the Russian River Valley. Aromas of ripe apple, tropical fruit, hazelnut and a touch of spice combine with the rich apple flavors and crisp acidity.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Golden-honey colored, this wine has toasty toffee oak and full-bodied richness, with a stark layering of citrus and baked apple. Concentrated and thick, it shows its youth and should benefit with time in both the glass and in the bottle.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Exhibits a rich, smoky core of anise and oaky flavors that pair well with fig, melon, citrus and apricot flavors. The perfumed citrus orchard aromas are especially enticing. Drink now through 2020. 2,089 cases made.
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Rochioli

Rochioli

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Rochioli, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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The Rochioli family has been growing grapes on its 136-acre ranch since the 1930s. In 1987, Tom Rochioli created the first Rochioli Estate Pinot Noir which Wine Spectator named “The Best Pinot Noir in America.” The Rochioli Vineyard is situated in a very diverse part of the Russian River Valley promoting diversity in the soil types, proximity to the ocean, as well as the contours of the valley, allowing for morning fog and cool evening breezes.

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.

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.

SWS444817_2015 Item# 166711