2014 Paul Hobbs Russian River Valley Chardonnay
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
As for the 2014 Chardonnays, they all possess great acid and obvious intensity. I’ll keep my notes short, but they are all brilliant wines, including the 2014 Chardonnay Russian River, which has plenty of citrus oil, white flowers, quince and peach. Paul Hobbs has emerged as one of the great success stories in Northern California. He’s an international consultant known for his outstanding work in Argentina. He is also now involved in a joint venture in the Finger Lakes region of New York, so hopefully we can anticipate some interesting Rieslings and possibly Grüner Veltliner, Pinot Blanc and even Gewurztraminer emerging from New York State. I had an extensive tasting with Hobbs at his winery in late January, and the results were all impressive. The tastings reflect the fact that, for Chardonnay, both 2013 and 2014 are brilliant vintages, and for Pinot Noir, 2014 may possibly eclipse 2013. (RP)
Paul Hobbs describes 2013 as a consistently warm, dry year but without excesses. I remember stopping by in January of that year, and being quite surprised when Hobbs told me he was likely to start irrigating imminently, which is highlyunusual. Then again, the drought was already causing stress in the vineyards. Overall, the 2014s have a touch more natural acidity and as well as more overall brightness and tension. New oak is up in the 2014s, but most wines appear to have the underlying material to support the oak and what is projected to be longer time in barrel. Most importantly, the 2014s show greater delineation of site than the 2013s. (AG)
Producer Note: "Highlighting the unique characteristics of the Russian River Valley this chardonnay displays bright golden hues with lifted aromas of citrus, brioche and yellow florals of daffodil and daisy. The long, creamy palate is layered with crisp red apple, apricot and lemon zest that finishes with a hint of minerality."