2014 Talley "Rincon Vineyard" Arroyo Grande Valley Chardonnay

SKU #1261646 93 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *Two Stars* Building on the considerable success of its predecessor from the 2013 harvest, the new Rincon Vineyard Chardonnay sets the bar of achievement higher yet. It is a very deep, generously fruited, beautifully balanced offering whose obvious potential very much inspires patience, its impressions of concentration, polish and great fruity vigor notwithstanding. Do not give into temptation and be fooled by its youthful charms, for it is one that deserves to be hidden away in a difficult-to-reach corner of the cellar for a few years and allowed to reach its best.  (1/2017)

93 points Vinous

 Very light gold. Smoke- and mineral-tinged orchard fruit, melon and fennel aromas show impressive clarity and pick up a sexy floral nuance with air. Chewy, energetic and pure, offering palate-staining pear nectar and honeysuckle flavors along with deeper suggestions of honey and vanilla. Reveals an exotic iodine quality on the incisive finish, which clings with outstanding tenacity and resonating florality. (JR)  (9/2016)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 A classy, balanced beauty that has classic buttered orchard fruits, hints of oak and brioche, with some toasty notes, the 2014 Chardonnay Talley Rincon Vineyard comes from a sensational vineyard in the Arroyo Grande Valley. Aged 17 months in 30% new French oak, it is medium-bodied, rounded and textured on the palate, with plenty of fruit and texture while staying fresh and lively. Drink it over the coming couple of years. (JR)  (7/2016)

K&L Notes

"Produced entirely from own rooted Chardonnay planted by Don Talley in 1984 at the top of the Eastern hillside of the Rincon Vineyard, a site marked by calcareous clay soils where vines struggle to produce small crops of intensely flavored grapes. The 2014 Rincon Vineyard Chardonnay offers delicate honeysuckle aromas infused with hints of wet stone. Meyer lemon and soft mineral notes are predominant on the palate leading to a chalky finish. This Chardonnay pairs beautifully with grilled chicken seasoned with lemon and rosemary." (Vintage note from Talley)

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Price: $39.99
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- 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:

Santa Maria/Santa Barbara

- Santa Maria and Santa Ynez make up the two AVAs of Santa Barbara County, an area known for its natural beauty and temperate climate. The best grape-growing areas, however, are located on the very coastal reaches of these two appellations, and are cooled by ever-present fog and ocean breezes (it is even cooler and foggier here than Carneros!). As expected, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir thrive while the more inland zones lay claim to Bordeaux varietals and some Rhône blends.