2013 Dehlinger "Estate" Russian River Valley Chardonnay

SKU #1233639 95 points Wine Enthusiast

 This is a bright, effusive, estate-grown, unfiltered white, delineated by high-toned acidity and gorgeously floral aromatics. Planted originally in 1975 to heritage Wente clone Chardonnay by owner/winemaker Tom Dehlinger, its generosity of fresh apple and pear ride a voluptuous, balanced texture that’s wholly satisfying, before meeting deeper hues of spicy, exotic tropical tones on the finish. (VB)  (10/2016)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 My tasting at the winery in January started with their beautiful Chardonnay, the 2013 Chardonnay Estate, which was fermented with indigenous yeast. The new oak is relatively restrained, and the wine offers plenty of old Wente, the classic hallmark of white peach, but in this case, backed up with crushed rock and white pebble notes suggesting minerality. The wine has tremendous intensity, full-bodied ripeness, but great acidity and a style that seems to cut a personality between a steely Chablis and a leaner Southern white Burgundy. Drink it over the next 3-4 years. (RP)  (3/2016)

93 points Vinous

 Dehlinger's 2013 Chardonnay Estate is a big, rich wine. Candied lemon, white flowers, tropical fruit and mint all flesh out in the glass. Surprisingly large-scaled and ample, the 2013 needs to be cellared for at least a few years, or at the very minimum, opened well in advance. I don't think I have ever tasted a young Chardonnay with this much pure power at Dehlinger. The textural intensity of the Wente clone comes through loud and clear. (AG)  (1/2016)

91 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *Two Stars* Dehlinger's penchant for richness and ripeness is in full evidence here with a broad sweep of sweet oak overlying lots of deep and well-formed fruit in the nose, and the wine follows suit with very generous, mouthfilling flavors that play notes of cream, caramel and toasted bread against the strong and ongoing presence of succulent, fully ripe apples. While it hints at lushness on entry and shows a bit of heat at the finish, the wine is enlivened with a good bit of integral acidity and does not bog down in excess. It is, in fact, still slightly tight at the end, and even better awaits some two or three years hence.  (5/2016)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Complex aromas of light nutmeg and oak lead to a trim, elegant offering of ripe green apple and pear. Ends juicy, with a spicy kick and a pithy edge. Drink now.  (3/2015)

K&L Notes

Producer Notes: "Our Chardonnay is grown from the California heritage Wente Clone, which produces small clusters and berries and has a notable minerality with an almost oily viscosity. We ferment and age the Chardonnay in French oak barrels with full malolactic fermentation. We planted our Chardonnay vines between 1975 and 1988 on a variety of exposures in Goldridge series soils. Careful leafing allows dappled light to reach the clusters and we thin to balance the crop load."

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Price: $37.99
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Staff Image By: Stephanie Vidales | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/21/2016 | Send Email
Simply put, this is a delicious Chardonnay. It has oaky richness but is elegant and balanced with just the right amount of acid, white floral notes, orchard fruits, and minerality. This will definitely be a staple Chardonnay for me for this upcoming holiday season!

Staff Image By: Gary Norton | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/20/2016 | Send Email
It's rich, heavy, leesy, unfiltered, unfettered and delicious. This is one of those wines that's big and ripe yet it still managed to retain a ton of acidity. I honestly think this wine can withstand 10-plus years of cellaring. A gorgeous old vine Chardonnay that is truly a "drink or hold" kind of wine.

Additional Information:



- 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:

Alexander Valley/Russian River

- Among Sonoma County's northernmost appellations, the Alexander Valley AVA acts as a gateway to neighboring Napa to the east and Mendocino to the north. It is a sprawling appellation, with pockets of distinct microclimates and soils, and as such, is home to a variety of wine grapes and styles. Nearly everything grows in the Alexander Valley, though Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay are the most widely planted grapes. The Russian River Valley lies to the south of Alexander Valley, and is marked by much cooler temperatures and frequently heavy fog. The Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grown here are some of the state's finest and most sought-after. Aromatic whites like Gewürztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.5