(2008 Vintage) This year's blend comes 54% from two Sangiacomo vineyards, Tall Grass and Green Acres; 20% from Larry Hyde's own Bayview Vineyard (this is his personal vineyard and not the Hyde Vineyard, but also in Napa), 11% Hudson Vineyard and 15% Platt Vineyard (Sonoma Coast), to lighten the blend. The heavier, clay-based soils of Carneros produce wines with a broad, full mouthfeel.
International Wine CellarPale yellow-green color. Wonderfully complex nose offers lime, peach, iodine, minerals, vanilla cream, truffle, smoke, hazelnut and earth. Sweet and lush yet light on its feet; this is actually the lowest in residual sugar of these vineyard-designated chardonnays, though all of them are under one gram per liter. Intriguing notes of biscuit and caramel. Saline and soil-inflected wine, with a long, chewy finish.
Connoisseurs' Guide to California WinesThe usual Ramey richness and layering are quite evident here, but the central fruit seems just a tad less forceful than in the other bottlings reviewed above. The nose is focused on ripe and green apples, and both oak and slightly toast notes show up as enriching adjuncts to the wine's central character. Firm at the end, the wine can open a bit with age, but it offers less promise than its mates.
Wine AdvocateRating: 95/100 - As reviewed in Wine Advocate # 162 on Dec-05