2009 Marcassin "Marcassin Vineyard" Sonoma Coast Chardonnay
Full-blown, mature Chardonnay at its peak, layered and complex, unfolding with anise, smoky oak, roasted fig, apricot and honeysuckle flavors. What makes this sing is the richness and proportionality of the flavors. Lingers and gains on the finish.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Year in and year out, the Chardonnay Marcassin Estate is one of the two or three most profound Chardonnays made in California, and a wine that could dominate any tasting of white Burgundies. The 2009 offers up notes of honeysuckle, citrus oil, tangerines, white peach and wet gravel followed by a wine with a full-bodied mouthfeel and zesty acidity. It should evolve for 10-15 years. (RP)
Apricot, peaches, sweet spices and butterscotch all meld together in the 2009 Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard. There is good immediacy to the fruit, but overall the 2009 lacks the depth to stand up to its oak, which is felt in the flavors, but more importantly, in the texture, while the finish is compact and attenuated. I would be tempted to give the 2009 another year or two to see if the wood integrates a little more fully. There is a chance that will happen given how well these wines have aged historically. A second bottle of the 2009, tasted informally, showed better balance. 90+
Acclaimed winemaker Helen Turley and her husband John Wetlaufer now have 20 acres of vines planted to steep hillsides on the Sonoma Coast that are part of the Marcassin Vineyard. While their Pinot Noirs have garnered plenty of acclaim, their Chardonnays truly sing. Robert Parker says that the Marcassin Chardonnays "probably eclipse 98% of white Burgundies made today for their complexity and aging potential."