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Sonoma Coast Vineyards Gold Ridge Hills Chardonnay 2012

Chardonnay from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
  • WW90
14.3% ABV
  • RP91
  • WE93
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4.8 2 Ratings
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4.8 2 Ratings
14.3% ABV

Winemaker Notes

With a diverse range of aromatics, it's the citrus and tropical fruit that stand out on the 2012 Gold Ridge Hills Chardonnay. Hints of fresh grapefruit and guava linger as it opens, the toast and spice components are in the early stages of reaching full integration. There are emerging elements of citrus and toasted marshmallow like richness on the palate surrounded by a silky acid matrix. It is showing zesty lemon and fresh pear with a center core of tropical white fruit and sweet tangerine. The aging potential for this wine should be exceptional given the bright acidity and complex fruit profile.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 90
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
It has now been more than a decade since founders John and Barbara Drady turned their passion for wines into a vocation. Wisely teaming up with experienced winemaker Tony Austin, the Dradys are owners of one of Sonoma Coast's most respected wineries. The 2012 Sonoma Coast Gold Ridge Hills Chardonnay shows wonderful complexities of ripe- core fruit, appealing sweet earth and lush buttery notes. It finishes with excellent balance and freshness. Drinks quite well now; will continue to develop and improve over the next several years. (Tasted: July 8, 2016, San Francisco, CA)
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Sonoma Coast Vineyards

Sonoma Coast Vineyards

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Sonoma Coast Vineyards, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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Sonoma Coast Vineyards produces handcrafted wines from the Extreme Sonoma Coast, a unique cold-climate growing area west of the Russian River Valley, a mere five miles from the Pacific Ocean, on the far western reaches of the Sonoma Coast Appellation. The potential for this region to produce wines of exceptional depth and complexity inspired founders John and Barbara Drady to join forces with acclaimed winemaker Anthony Austin and introduce their first vintage in 2002. Low yields of mature fruit with high levels of natural acidity, intense flavors and remarkable complexity result from the long, cool growing season, where harvests may extend into early November.

Sonoma Coast

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A vast appellation covering Sonoma County’s Pacific coastline, the Sonoma Coast AVA runs from the San Pablo Bay to the Mendocino County border. The region can actually be divided into two sections—the “true” Sonoma Coast, marked by high rainfall, marine soils, cool temperatures, and saline ocean breezes, from which one can actually see the ocean—and the warmer, drier vineyards further inland, creating a diversity of wine styles. Contained within the appellation is the much smaller and more focused Fort Ross-Seaview AVA.

Sonoma Coast is highly regarded for elegant Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and, increasingly, cool-climate Syrah, with high acidity, moderate alcohol, firm tannin, and fruit that is rarely overripe. One of the most favorable sites within the region is the Petaluma Gap, where a break in the coastal mountain range allows Pacific winds and fog to funnel through and cool the vineyards.

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’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.

YNG794022_2012 Item# 140712