2007 Au Bon Climat Santa Barbara Chardonnay
91 points from Wine Spectator: "Crisp and tightly wound, with sleek pineapple, melon and green apple notes that are firm, focused and full-bodied. This is most impressive on the finish, where the flavors are juicy. Drink now through 2013." (Tasting Highlights, May 6, 2009) From Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Light, bright yellow. Initially shy orange, pear, honeysuckle and mineral aromas gain strength with aeration. Light-bodied orchard and pit fruit flavors are easygoing but a bit loose-knit, with vague bitter/sweet qualities on the back end." (Nov/Dec '08) Au Bon Climat winemaker Jim Clendenen has been a driving force for high quality wines in Santa Barbara County since the early '80s. His signature style, which deftly merges Old World sensibilities with New World flair manifests in tasty, well-crafted wines from regional blends like this one, to the most sophisticated single-vineyard bottlings. Using top notch fruit from the county's best vineyards, including the famed Bien Nacido vineyard, the 2007 Santa Barbara Chardonnay is graced with a delightful tension between the tropical fruit and buttered toast nuances that epitomize California chardonnay and the bright acidity and minerality of a white Burgundy. Priced for frequent drinking, this chardonnay will pair well with roasted chicken or a rich fish, like turbot paired with roasted leeks.