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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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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 all the way from the Mendocino County border, south to the San Pablo Bay. The region can actually be divided into two sections—the actual coastal vineyards, marked by marine soils, cool temperatures and saline ocean breezes—and the warmer, drier vineyards further inland, which are still heavily influenced by the Pacific but not quite with same intensity.

Contained within the appellation are the much smaller Fort Ross-Seaview and Petaluma Gap AVAs.

The Sonoma Coast is highly regarded for elegant Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and, increasingly, cool-climate Syrah. The wines have high acidity, moderate alcohol, firm tannin, and balanced ripeness.

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.

YNG794022_2012 Item# 140712