2012 Rhys "Horseshoe Vineyard" Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
More lean and racy than the Apline Vineyard, the 2012 Chardonnay Horseshoe Vineyard has thrilling Chablis-like minerality and green citrus to go with lots of lemon curd, mint and hints of sappy flowers. Not quite as broad shouldered as the Alpine Vineyard, yet just as pure, precise and layered, this is another thrilling Chardonnay from this team that will have 10-15 years (or more) of longevity.
Rich, oily and viscous on the palate, the 2014 Chardonnay Horseshoe Vineyard is all about texture. Orange blossoms, mint, honey, apricot jam, butter and spices meld into the racy, voluptuous finish as the 2012 shows off its class and exuberant personality. A slight element of Burgundian-inflected reduction lingers on the close. If opened young, the 2012 needs a lot of air, but ideally readers should be prepared to cellar this gem for at least a few years.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Bright greenish yellow. Intensely perfumed bouquet of fresh orchard and citrus fruits, with complex iodine, mineral and jasmine qualities building with air. Concentrated but lithe and precise, offering slow-to-unfold bitter pear skin and quinine flavors that pick up sweetness and a hint of gingery spices with air. The mineral element dominates the finish, which shows excellent clarity and lingering florality.
400 m from Alpine Vineyard but very different - protected from ocean winds and on a ridge of sedimentary shale called Monterey formation. Very intense and bold yet tightly laced...Great excitement and richness.