2008 Martinelli Chardonnay Charles Ranch
Sonoma Coast, California
WB Rating: 87

Alcohol by volume: 14.1%
Price at time of purchase: $48.00 (from winery)
Type: Chardonnay
Principal varietal(s): Chardonnay

I've tasted this wine - made from grapes grown only two miles in from Fort Ross on the Pacific Coast - two different times, once in mid 2012 and again in June of 2013. I was very impressed in the 2012 tasting (90+ rating), where the wine came across as a lovely medium-bodied Chardonnay displaying sweet lemon and citrus blossoms flavors along with cinnamon and clove spiciness and a touch of yeasty leesiness. It had an attractively taut and focused feel that expanded nicely in the mouth. The more recent tasting, unfortunately, showed nothing of the kind - the wine, while lean and crisp and certainly pleasant enough, was extremely austere and dominated by minerals and light hazelnut flavors. It showed virtually no fruit and very little charm. My score reflects the average of these two extremes. - HK 2013-06-29


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