2006 Beringer "Sbragia Limited Release" Napa Valley Chardonnay (Previously $40)

SKU #1050952

93 points Wine Enthusiast: 'Like the 2005 vintage, this bottling has 100% new French oak. But the wine feels more balanced and fatter than its predecessor, and over all more satisfying. The mineral-infused roasted pineapple, candied ginger and crème brûlée flavors finish dry and crisp and elegant. Great job from Beringer's winemaker emeritus, Ed Sbragia." (09/08) 92 points Wine Spectator: "A rich, complex style that veers to opulent without being excessive, offering layers of ripe fig, honeydew melon, hazelnut and spicy nutmeg notes. Deeply concentrated. Drink now through 2010. 5,775 cases made." (05/08) 92 points Stephen Tanzer: "Good pale, bright yellow. Complex aromas of apricot, pineapple, honey, hazelnut, toasted bread and smoky oak. Silky, opulent and open-knit, offering very good volume but also shape and lift. The longest of these chardonnays. The alcohol here is 15.3%, and the texture is in fact quite glyceral. This is a 'vineyard and barrel selection,' according to winemaker Laurie Hook." (May/June '08) 92 points Robert Parker: "Another offering that is more restrained than it used to be is the 2006 Chardonnay Sbragia Limited Release. It reveals an opulent tropical fruit character, a full-bodied mouthfeel, and hints of hazelnut, brioche, and honeysuckle as well as abundant glycerin and length. Good acidity provides balance and overall zest. Drink it over the next 3-4 years." (12/07)

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Price: $32.99
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- It's hard to believe that up until about 30 years ago, this extremely popular varietal hid behind the veil of geographical names like Chablis and Puligny-Montrachet. Now grown all over the world and bottled by its varietal name, Chardonnay has achieved a level of branding unlike any other wine. Surprisingly, though, what you get when you buy Chardonnay can differ greatly from country to country and even within one country, depending on the climate where it's grown and how it is vinified and aged. From fresh, crisp and minerally with apple and lemon notes to rich and buttery with tropical fruit overtones, Chardonnay runs the gamut. In France's Burgundy, Chardonnay is the source of the prized wines of Chablis, Corton-Charlemagne, Mâcon, Meursault and Montrachet. It also the foundation of exceptional Champagne, where it is blended with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier or vinified on its own into Blanc de Blancs. It is also extremely popular in California, and is gaining popularity in Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and South Africa.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.