2006 Hanzell Sonoma Valley Chardonnay

SKU #1048505 93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2006 Chardonnay (4,600+ cases) was 80% tank-fermented with no malolatic, and 33% spent 18 months in barrel. It possesses lovely white peach, pear, and crushed rock characteristics, full body, splendid acidity as well as purity, and a gracious integration of subtle oak. This beautiful white can be enjoyed over the next 5-6 years.  (12/ 2008)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Flinty, with a tight beam of mineral, white peach, nectarine, green apple and lime flavors that are concentrated, keeping the focus on the vibrant fruit.  (6/ 2009)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Fresh, pale yellow. Pear, lichee, minerals, honey and vanilla on the nose. Dense and firmly built, with serious lemony acidity and stony minerality keeping this young wine's tactile kernel of pear and citrus fruit under wraps today. This rather brooding, no-malo chardonnay will need time to unwind. Finishes chewy and brisk, with an intriguing undertone of honey, earth and vanillin oak.  (6/ 2009)

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Price: $54.99

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By: Chiara Shannon |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 11/24/2009  | Send Email
In a recent tasting of 20 different California Chardonnays in this price range, the 2006 Hanzell Sonoma Valley was in a league of its own in terms of quality and class. This is a big wine, but exhibits structure, richness, complexity and length where others in this category are lacking. The nose is clean, showing more pear, melon, and citrus flavors (as opposed to caramel-soaked pineapple) and the palate is broad and rich, but supported by levels of minerality and acidity that keep the overall impression fresh and lively (as opposed to cloying). The finish is long and dry. A Chardonnay worth its weight in dollars.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Chardonnay

- 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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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:

Sonoma County

- Second in fame only to Napa, this "other" valley offers just about every climate and topography imaginable. From its cool and fog-enshrouded coastal regions on the far west, to the sprawling Alexander Valley on the boarder of Napa and the many little dips and peaks in between, Sonoma has been a vital wine-grape-growing region since the mid 1800s. Important sub-AVAs include Chalk Hill (known for chardonnay and sauvignon blanc), Dry Creek Valley (where zin is king) Knights Valley (largely cabernet land), Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast (both celebrated pinot and chardonnay zones).