2015 Hilliard Bruce "Estate" Sta. Rita Hills Chardonnay (Elsewhere $35)

SKU #1402422 92 points Vinous

 The 2015 Chardonnay Estate sizzles with energy and tension. Citrus and floral notes abound in a finely sculpted Chardonnay that impresses with its balance and poise. This is an especially bright style. And it works beautifully here. (AG)  (9/2018)

91 points Jeb Dunnuck

 Starting with the 2015 Chardonnay Estate, it comes from the Estate vineyard in the Sta. Rita Hills (this is on the northern portion of the region) and is a mix of clones 76 and 96 that was barrel fermented and aged. This light gold colored effort offers a powerful, masculine bouquet of ripe melon and lemon fruits intermixed with lots of salty Seabreeze, spice, and obvious minerality. With rock solid concentration, good acidity, and a great finish, it’s a serious white that will evolve gracefully for 8-10 years.  (10/2018)

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By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/11/2019 | Send Email
A pure, bright, mineral infused rendition of Chardonnay from this great vineyard site in the Sta. Rita Hills. Grown on sandy soils with diatomaceous earth and fine gravel. Piercing yellow fruits, ripe citrus, oyster shell like salinity. Lovely freshness and drive. This is a one time deal at this price point, don't miss out.
Top Value!

Additional Information:



- 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.


- 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:

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.