2010 Two Sisters "Courtney's Vineyard" Sta. Rita Hills Chardonnay (Elsewhere $25)

SKU #1137463 92 points Wine & Spirits

 Earthen and powerful, this doesn't fully show itself until it takes on some air. If you’re going to drink it soon, decant it. Like the Lincourt chardonnay below, this comes from the Foley Family stable, in this case from the top-performing blocks of Bill Foley’s chardonnay vineyard at Rancho Las Hermanas. It's raised exclusively in new oak barrels, but the fruit has enough power to hold the oak in place, feeling rich and poised in its pineapple and sea salt pungency. It would stand up well to sea bass in a brown butter sauce.  (8/ 2013)

92 points Wine Enthusiast

 Everything about this Chardonnay speaks of class. It's dry and superbly structured in acids and tannins, and shows a chalky minerality that lends substance to the tropical fruit and honeysuckle flavors. Two Sisters is assembling a great track record with this bottling.  (7/ 2013)

Wine Spectator

 Features aromas of ripe baked apple, citrus and green pear, with lively acidity and a cleansing aftertaste. Drink now through 2017.  (7/ 2013)

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Varietal:

Chardonnay

- 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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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 Sants Inez 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.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.5