As one who tends to hate the combination of oak and young Chardonnay, I was surprised at the deft touch at which the oak was used here. It spent 10 months in barrel, with 50% in new French oak, and the rest in essentially neutral, 3- or 4-year-old barrels. Released in April 2009, I only tasted it this month, time which, according to SCV founder John Drady, allowed the flavors to continue to develop and integrate. Now it’s got a fairly hefty body with an herbal tinge, with some more vanilla and some minerality, too, and amedium-length mineral-pear finish. Good with autumnal and winter foods like butternut squash and herbed salmon.

WHO: Sonoma Coast Vineyard
WHAT: Chardonnay
WHERE: Sonoma Coast, California
WHEN: 2007
HOW MUCH: $34 (media sample)

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About The Author

Becky Sue Epstein
International Editor

Becky Sue Epstein is Palate Press’s International Editor. An experienced writer, editor, broadcaster, and consultant in the fields of wine, spirits, food, and travel, her work has appeared in many national and international publications including Intermezzo Magazine, Fine Wine & Liquor, Art & Antiques, Luxury Golf & Travel, Food + Wine, and Wine Spectator. She began her career as a restaurant reviewer for the Los Angeles Times while working in film and television. Epstein is also the author of several books on wine, spirits, and food, including Champagne: A Global History; Brandy: A Global History, and Strong, Sweet and Dry: A Guide to Vermouth, Port, Sherry, Madeira, and Marsala.

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