2014 Joseph Phelps "Freestone Vineyards" Sonoma Coast Chardonnay
The 2014 Chardonnay Freestone Vineyards is rich, deeply-colored and intense, with plenty of orange peel, crème brulée and vanilla scents that add complexity. This is a decidedly ample, broad Chardonnay endowed with a real sense of phenolic richness and resonance that carries through to the deep, powerful finish. (AG)
Wine & Spirits
Planted in 1999, the Joseph Phelps vineyard in Freestone grows over 20 acres of chardonnay on wind-cooled hillsides. This vintage is vibrant and delicious: The richness of its oak quickly becomes an afterthought as the coltish acidity of the site takes hold, driving aromas of yellow raspberries and grapefruit that bristle with energy in the end. Decant this for mahi mahi, or age it another few years.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2014 Chardonnay Freestone Vineyard is 100% Chardonnay aged 13 months in one-third new French oak puncheons and barrels. They make a considerable amount of this wine (4,000 cases), which exhibits orange marmalade, honeysuckle, a floral underpinning and some gravelly minerality. It is fresh, crisp, medium to full-bodied, and comes from a blend of different clonal material. Drink it over the next 4-5 years. This classic Napa winery has undergone a facelift after many, many years, but perhaps the biggest change has been the huge investment they’ve made in the area of Freestone on the Sonoma Coast. This is where they focus on Chardonnay and, to a bigger extent, Pinot Noir, and the early returns look promising. (RP)
*One Star* From their first appearance in these pages, the Phelps Freestone Chardonnays have shown admirably in their combined depth, richness and firm, ageworthy balance. And this new one is no different. If not the boldest wine around, it never stints on bright yet juicy fruit, rich but not overwhelming crème brûlée oakiness and exemplary acidity that makes itself known from first to last. It will hold up well in bottle and deserves every chance to knit more fully together.