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Rodney Strong Chalk Hill Chardonnay 2013

Chardonnay from Chalk Hill, Sonoma County, California
  • WW90
  • RP90
14% ABV
  • JS90
  • WW89
  • WW89
  • W&S91
  • WE90
  • WE90
  • WE88
  • WE87
  • WS88
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3.6 10 Ratings
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3.6 10 Ratings
14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Barrel fermentation in new and seasoned French oak added toasty vanilla and spice complexities. During the eleven months of barrel aging, we regularly stirred the "lees" in barrel, and later in tank, which imparts an elegant fullness and creamy texture on the palate. In the glass, the wine is both creamy and crisp, with golden delicious yellow apple, baked pie spices and a hint of minerality on the long finish.

Enjoy over the next one to three years with lobster, herb crusted halibut with a minted sweet pea purée or grilled veal chops with sautéed mushrooms.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 90
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
Top chardonnays in this price range are hard to find. Often they are too sweet or have too much oak. The excellent 2013 Rodney Strong Chalk Hill Chardonnay stays pure and fine to the AVA. Shows dried apple aromas, with a note of mineral; firm and well built on the palate; long, crisp aftertaste.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Aromas of tangerines, nectarines and green apples emerge from the 2013 Chardonnay Chalk Hill Estate Vineyard. Medium bodied with a hint of wet rock minerality, this pure beauty’s striking style appears to traverse both Chablis and a leaner white Burgundy.
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Rodney Strong

Rodney Strong Vineyards

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Rodney Strong Vineyards, Chalk Hill, Sonoma County, California
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Founded by wine industry pioneer, Rod Strong, in 1959, Rodney Strong Vineyards is now owned by the Kleins, a farming-based family that prides itself on land stewardship and a relentless push for superior wine quality from Sonoma County. After purchasing the company in 1989, Tom Klein began the endeavor that today brings together excellent vineyards, the industry's finest winemaking equipment, and exceptional talent. The winery farms and sources grapes from vineyards throughout Sonoma County, focusing on Alexander Valley, Russian River Valley and Chalk Hill. Rodney Strong Vineyards is best known for its estate-bottled and vineyard-designated wines, and is also recognized for their sustainable and Fish Friendly Farming, dedication to solar energy production and becoming carbon neutral in 2009.

Chalk Hill

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A Sonoma sub-appellation whose boundaries cover the northeastern corner of the Russian River Valley AVA, the Chalk Hill growing area is named after its unique chalky and white, volcanic ash soils. This terrain has proven successful with white varieties, namely Chardonnay and Sauvignon blanc.

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.

SWS59225_2013 Item# 135750