2013 Kendall-Jackson Highland Estates "Camelot Highlands" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Other Chardonnays include the more mineral, Meursault-like 2013 Chardonnay Jackson Estate Camelot Highlands from Santa Maria. This shows notes of hazelnuts, caramelized citrus fruit, a hint of match sticks and wet rocks. It is a complex, Burgundian style of Chardonnay that is completely different than the other wines from Kendall-Jackson. In some extremist circles it is fashionable to criticize anything that’s big and successful (Kendall-Jackson is both of those). This winery, in addition to the massive quantities of some of their less expensive wines, which deliver terrific bargains to wine consumers, also produces limited quantities of high-end wines that can take their place against the toughest of competition. All this is attributable to the late visionary Jess Jackson and today is carried on by his widow, Barbara Banke. They’ve never been shy about spending money for top mountain vineyards throughout California, and have always hired talented winemakers. In this case, Kendall-Jackson’s entire hierarchy of wines has been guided impeccably by their longtime employee, Randy Ullom. He doesn’t get much notice from wine geeks, but what he does is remarkable. And when you consider the diversity of wines of which he oversees production, the diverse array of microclimates, terroirs, etc., he probably has as much experience making large and tiny quantities of high-quality wines as any winemaker in the world. (RP)
Offers lots of subtlety and polish, from the light, vanilla-accented toasty oak notes to the rich, creamy fig, honeydew, white peach and apricot flavors. Intense and elegant. Drink now. 2,037 cases made.
Brown spice, dried honeysuckle, Gala-apple skins, a touch of light custard and sea-salt-laden citrus and stone fruit show on the nose of this mouthwatering wine. Once sipped, flavors of butter-poached apples and ripe pears are spiced with more sea salt. A tight, pithy structure holds it all together.