Santa Rosa Fine Wine

California Chardonnay Wine Tasting Notes

1995 Peter Michael Belle Cote Chardonnay - Firm acid grip on the finish with a distinct honey nose. Initially thought the wine had turned and was disjointed, but got surprising better the longer it sat in the glass. Jun 2011

1997 Marcassin Vineyard Chardonnay - The Marcassin was outstanding and youthful. Noted oyster shell, some sweetness and smoke, butterscotch, but in no way oxidized, as well as flint that reminded me of a younger white burgundy. The wine was young, and will continue to age well for some time. Apr 2011

1998 Stony Hill Chardonnay - Light browning, but surprisingly firm acidity. Chablis like in style, combined with a floral quality, thought it was very nice. Several folks thought it was oxidized. While certainly mature, thought it showed to expectations. A good mature California Chardonnay.Apr 2012

2000 Williams Seylem Allen Vineyard Chardonnay - A blind ringer, correctly guessed as aged Chardonnay. Fully mature, creme brulee, nice minerality and balance, a good drinking wine that indicated 16% ABV, but did not show heat. May 2011

2004 Walter Hanzel Cahill Lane Chardonnay - Not your typically California Chardonnay, have become increasingly more interested in Walter Hanzel wines the more we taste. Reminiscent of a Domaine Lefliave, noted a highly appealing flinty nose, rich but not over the top fruit, and a subtle citrus finish. Will benefit with additional age, but could easily be enjoyed now. Aug 2013

2006 Marcassin Three Sisters Chardonnay - Have had this wine several times recently and this was the best showing. Distinctly California Chardonnay in style, medium bodied, round, nice acidity early on, becoming more creamy in time. Noted pear and vanilla. Even though it was the best showing of the wine for us, overall just an ok experience. Aug 2012

2006 Rhys Alpine Chardonnay - Bright, young, almost Aubert like fruit, on the sweet side and a little one dimensional. Thought it might be a 2006 to 2008 Rochioli Chardonnay. Generally like Rhys Chardonnay, thought this one just ok. Dec 2012

2009 Aubert Lauren Chardonnay - A wine that could not be more different than the Hanzel, big forward fruit, exotic tropical fruits, yeasty, but also one dimentional. Start of the bottle to end, maintained a consistent taste profile that was good and decidedly Californian. Think the Aubert suffered a bit next to the exceptional Hanzel, nonetheless, a well made easy drinking Chardonnay. Aug 2013

2009 Rochioli Rachel’s Vineyard Chardonnay - Distinctly California Chardonnay, thought it had a young Peter Michael profile with clean candied fruit and some residual sugar apparent. Was surprised it was a Rochioli Rachels, which in our opinion is one of the best Chardonnay made in California. On reflection, think the wine was opened too young, and expect it to show significantly better in 3 to 5 plus years. May 2012

2010 St Francis Intatto Chardonnay - Lemon, cream, round, a nice wine that should be opened young. This was a highly afforable unoaked Chardonnay that I enjoyed more than the group as a whole. Half the group thought it Burgundy, half California. Apr 2012