2015 Stag's Leap Wine Cellars "Karia" Napa Valley Chardonnay

SKU #1315924 91 points Decanter

 While the reds are far better known - the Judgement of Paris tasting famously put its 1973 Cabernet in the headlines - Stag's Leap Wine Cellars also produce two excellent whites: a Sauvignon Blanc and this Chardonnay, named after the Greek word for 'graceful'. About three-quarters of the wine is barrel fermented, then matured for nine months in 30% new French oak, giving a full-bodied, buttery nutty palate of autumnal spiced apples and mouthwatering acidity. Complex and elegant. (TG)  (2/2018)

90 points James Suckling

 Aromas of white peach, lemon rind and green apple follow through to a medium body, tangy fruit and a green tea undertone. Lighter style. Enjoyable.  (3/2017)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2015 Chardonnay Karia is an elegant, restrained, understated style of Chardonnay with good, crisp citrus fruit, poached pear, a touch of honeysuckle, and a delicate, discreet oakiness. This medium-bodied wine is refreshing, well-made and attractive. (RP)  (6/2016)

Wine Enthusiast

 Full bodied and fleshy, this is an approachable wine, richly concentrated in candied-peach flavor that pleases and finds a balance between power and grace. (VB)  (9/2017)

Wine Spectator

 Zeroes in on spicy apple, pear, melon and honeysuckle flavors. Still a touch raw and pithy, with a citrus skin texture. (JL)  (7/2017)

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Price: $29.99

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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, M√Ęcon, 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.
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.
Specific Appellation:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.5