2010 Ridge Vineyards "Monte Bello" Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay
Crushed rocks, flint, jasmine and white stone fruits form the backbone of the 2010 Chardonnay Monte Bello. Still very tight and backward, the 2010 is going to require a measure of patience, but it is striking, even today. A bright, crystalline finish rounds things out in style. The 2010 is shaping up to be another classic from Ridge, but it will also require a measure of patience. Drink 2015-2025. If a formal Bordeaux-like classification existed for US wineries, Ridge would be at the top of the list. Endowed with a stunning set of terroirs, the vision of Paul Draper and the talent of winemaker Eric Baugher, Ridge is set to build on an extraordinary legacy of world-class wines. Ridge is one of the best and most intelligently run wineries anywhere in the world. In addition to this gorgeous set of current and upcoming releases, I am also including notes on a few library releases I tasted during my last visit. Prices remain exceedingly fair for what are world-class wines in every way.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2010 Chardonnay Monte Bello (100% Chardonnay that achieved 14.4% alcohol) exhibits a more vibrant nose of citrus blossoms, crushed rocks, oak and waxy, buttery fruit (white currants and white peaches). Crisp acidity gives the wine an attractive, well-delineated style, and it should age easily given its zesty acid profile. This solidly made Chardonnay should drink well for 6-8 years.
Ridge Vineyard's Monte Bello Chardonnay is back in a big way after they didn't bottle this "first wine" in the 2009 vintage. In 2010, a total of 27 barrels were selected from three vine parcels on the Monte Bello estate for this prestigious Chardonnay. The wine was barrel fermented with native yeasts in 90% air-dried American oak barrels and 10% French oak. The wine was aged in-barrel for 11 months before being selected for bottling.