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TOR Durell Vineyard Chardonnay 2017

  • RP95
  • JD95
  • JS94
  • WS92
750ML / 0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

The 2017 Durell Chardonnay explodes from the glass with huge amounts of rich fruit, sweet butter, sea spray and lemon blossoms. The palate is very rich and seamless but with excellent natural acidity to provide lift and definition. The finish is rich, long and tails off to more white flowers.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Tor’s block of the Durell Vineyard is on the “Sand Hill” section of the vineyard, looking down on the Sonoma Valley. The soil is Goulding clay loam, mixed with diatomaceous earth, and millions of years ago, it formed a sand bar reaching into the prehistoric lake that covered the town of Sonoma. Tor favors the Wente clone in this vineyard, which is a selection of plant material that sets a small crop with small berries. The result is a high skin-to-flesh ratio and great concentration of varietal character. The single new barrel cooper used is Saury. The 2017 Tor Chardonnay Durell Vineyard is slightly closed on the nose, opening out to honeyed peaches, lemon tart, melons and savory/toasty notes with yeasty hints. The palate is full-bodied with great intensity of savory flavors, finishing long, satiny and very savory. 343 cases produced.
JD 95
Jeb Dunnuck
Even better, the 2017 Chardonnay Durell Vineyard comes from a great terroir on the Sonoma Coast and is prettier and more vibrant, with classy notes of white peach, white flowers, pineapple cream, and flinty minerality. With medium body, high yet integrated acidity, and a great finish, it’s well worth the extra effort to track down.
JS 94
James Suckling
Aromas of dried apples, pears and limes. Hot stones and minerals. Medium-to full-bodied, dense and firm. Vivid and stony.
WS 92
Wine Spectator
Big and rich-tasting, with a minerally edge to the dried fig, quince and apple pastry flavors. Intensely spicy on the finish.
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TOR

TOR

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TOR, California
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We make great wines simply because we love making them. Wine is irresistible, it is fun, and it is about sharing passion, good fortune and community. TOR exists today because of the relationships we’ve cultivated over decades with mentors, grapegrowers and friends. This is indisputable: Tor knows a great vineyard. Less is always more when it comes to bottling some of the best grapes on the planet. In the tussle between the will of nature and the winemaker – our work is staying out of the way.
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Sonoma Valley

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Perhaps the most historically significant appellation in Sonoma County, the Sonoma Valley is home to both Buena Vista winery, California's oldest commercial winery, and Gundlach Bundschu winery, California's oldest family-run winery.

It is also one of the more geologically and climactically diverse districts. The valley includes and overlaps four distinct Sonoma County sub-appellations, including Carneros, Moon Mountain District, Sonoma Mountain and Bennett Valley. With mountains, benchlands, plains, abundant sunshine and the cooling effects of the nearby Pacific, this appellation can successfully produce a wide range of grape varieties. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Gewürztraminer, and most notably, Zinfandel all thrive here. Ancient Zinfandel vines over 100 years old produce small crops of concentrated, spicy fruit, which in turn make some of the Valley's most unique wines. These can also be made as “field blends” (wines made from a mix of grape varieties grown in the same vineyard) along with Petite Sirah, Carignan and Alicante Bouschet.

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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.

RAE101024_2017 Item# 532173