“The 2019 Chardonnay Proprietor Selection needs a fair bit of swirling to reveal glorious notes of warm apricots, fresh grapefruit, lemon tart and fresh Bosc pears with touches of beeswax, allspice, candied ginger and toasted almond. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has tightly wound citrus and stone fruit layers with a satiny texture and fantastic freshness, finishing with loads of spice and mineral sparks. This is one beautifully crafted Napa Valley Chardonnay!”
“Buttery richness to luscious spiced apple tart and baked pear flavors. Ground nutmeg lingers into the broad, plush finish with powerful toasty notes. Drink now through 2023. 250,000 cases made. — KM”
Double Gold - Reserve Class Champion
“Double Gold, Reserve Class Champion”
“The 2017 Chardonnay features compelling spiced apples, almond croissant, honeyed peaches and fresh baked pear tart notions on the nose. Medium-bodied with a satiny texture, the palate delivers plenty of peaches and savory layers with a racy line and mineral-tinged finish.”
“Gentle passion-fruit flavors fill this broad, creamy sauvignon. There's brightness to the fruit, which cushions the structure, the wine full enough to serve on its own or with roast fish.”
#1 Most Popular Chardonnay in American Restaurants
“16th year in the top ten.”
Top White Wine
“Top White Wine”
Double Gold - Class Champion
“Double Gold Class Champion”
“What makes this a standout is its tart flavors coupled with passion fruit. It’s definitely a sauvignon blanc with a range — lime, grass, grapefruit and nectarine. Bright acidity. Zesty finish. A Bottle Rock knockout.
Peg Melnik, May 22, 2017”
“Fresh grapefruit, limes and grass dominate on the nose. The palate is quite light but very fresh and enjoyable with a nice helping of acidity.”
“Rich and creamy, with seductive vanilla-scented oak that adds texture and nuance to the solid core of green apple, pear and melon flavors”
“Both showy and inviting, this white features zesty, crisp apple and pear flavors. Subtle and nuanced, with light vanilla-scented oak notes that slowly expand on the finish, where this offers an elegant profile. -JL”
“Plump and full-bodied, this wows with rich melon, pear and apple notes and a fine touch of oak. Should appeal to those who like oak-tilted wines. –JL
“Pure and direct, this no-frills effort relies on pear, apple and melon fruit, with oak accents sitting quietly in the background. - JL”
“Double Gold Reserve Class Champion”
“Composed of 83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petit Verdot and 8% Merlot, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Diamond Selection has a deep garnet color, sashaying out of the glass with flirtatious scents of crème de cassis, kirsch, Black Forest cake and cinnamon stick plus suggestions of cigar box, fragrant soil and dried rose petals. Full-bodied, rich and decadently spicy in the mouth, it coats the palate with black fruit preserves and plush tannins, finishing long and perfumed.”
“Making this wine a fun taste are two facts: This is the first new varietal introduced by Rombauer in more than 20 years, and it is just the second white wine in its 36-year history.
Rombauer has built up a big fan base and reputation for its rich, buttery and toasty chardonnay wines. Lest you think their sauvignon blanc will follow in that style, this is a great example of tasting before assuming.
Rombauer’s 2015 Sauvignon Blanc has zesty lemon and riper tangerine citrus with Asian pear and hints of ripe exotic pineapple. There are no noticeable oak flavors; the wine was fermented in stainless steel, and a small portion of neutral oak for a creamier mouthfeel. This is a deliciously fresh, fruit-forward, and beautifully balanced sauvignon blanc.
January 25, 2016”
“Rombauer’s Sauvignon Blanc “is a winner. Aromas of lime, grapefruit, pear and nectarine. Richly tropical notes. Balanced yet lively acidity lingers on the palate. This one’s for people who say they don’t like Sauvignon Blanc.”
December 21, 2016”
No. 3, Top 10 Chardonnays in U.S. Restaurants
“This shows tension and depth with sliced lemon and hints of ripe peach. Some cream and flan undertones. Full body, lightly oily and a flavorful finish.”
“Ultrarich, smooth and creamy, with tiers of fig, apricot, honeydew, custard apple and oak flavors that fade to butterscotch accents.”
“Shows off spicy, toasty oak in grand form, but there’s plenty of green fruit to celebrate, with ripe apple, melon and pear flavors. Ends with a touch of citrus, returning to the safety of the rich, buttery oak.”
“Finely chiseled flavors of red currant, plum and dark cherry are matched to notes of cedar and sandalwood. Offers hints of dried green herbs and beef on the finish. Drink now through 2021. 4,000 cases made.”
“The 2014 Chardonnay Home Ranch Vineyard has an excellent, buttery, almost French style, with notes of brioche, nectarine, and citrus oil. It was aged in 90% new French oak for nine months. This is a full-bodied, rich, serious Chardonnay to drink over the next 4-5 years.”
“The 2014 Chardonnay Proprietor's Selection received the same time in oak, but the amount of new French and American oak was increased to 45%. This is a much fuller, more fleshy style and much more textured, with some complex tropical fruit and orange marmalade notes, subtle oak and medium to full-bodied richness. This is an impressive 2014 to drink over the next 4-5 years.”
4th Most Popular Chardonnay in American Restaurants
Gold, Reserve Champion
“Cedar, sagebrush and herbal aromas stamp this the textbook Cabernet Sauvignon. Well-ripened red and black fruit, integrated tannins, and a clean, lingering finish make it complex and cellar-worthy.”
““Pure and rich, focused on a supple core of licorice, dark berry, light cedar, fresh earth and savory herb flavors, ending with a long, smooth finish that keeps repeating the core fruit themes.””
“Rich, ripe and full of powerful flavors of Christmas pudding, dark cherry and black currant that are backed by muscular acidity and tannins. Dried mint and slate details show on the dense finish. Drink now through 2021.”
“This high-toned, well-made wine shows rich clove, tobacco and currant notes beneath its hit of acidity. Firm, woody tannins provide grip, with complexity and full bodied weight.”
“Blended with 6% Petit Verdot, this wine is treated as a reserve-tier bottling. It delivers high-toned red fruit and plum notes dusted with spice and dried herb. It's robust in body and weight and long on the finish.”
Class Champion and Double Gold
“Class Champion and Double Gold”
“An elegant, graceful style that's easy to enjoy, from the initial creamy oak aromas to the gradual firming midpalate, showing off a cedary oak grip to the tannins. – J.L.”
“A creamy-textured, charming style that's easy to drink yet is deceptively complex and layered, with a mix of vanilla-scented oak and vibrant peach, nectarine, honeydew and apricot flavors. Long on the finish. Drink now. – J.L.”
“Serves up lots of ripe, rich, generous Chardonnay flavors, with tiers of ripe apple, pear, peach and nectarine notes, supported by lively acidity and ending with a kiss of oak and mouthwatering acidity. Drink now. – J.L.”
“The 2013 Chardonnay Proprietor Selection exhibits terrific caramelized tropical fruit notes intermixed with a hint of orange zest in a medium to full-bodied, fresh, lively style with the oak component pushed to the background. The wine is full, fleshy, sexy and impressive. This brilliant 600-case cuvee should drink well for 3-4 years.”
“The beautiful 2013 Chardonnay Buchli Station Vineyard (130 cases produced) comes from a vineyard bordering St. Pablo Bay. Copious aromas of orange zest and honeyed citrus are followed by medium to full-bodied fruit notes. This top-flight wine can be enjoyed over the next 3-4 years.”
“The single vineyard 2013 Chardonnay Home Ranch Vineyard displays a green-ish hue to its light straw/gold color as well as fruit-flavored notes of spring flowers, quince, ï»¿honeysuckle, white currants and a notion of tangerine oil. One of the best wines I have ever tasted from Rombauer, this stunning Chardonnay should drink well for 5-6 years. Unfortunately, production was limited to 130 cases.”
“Pure and clean, this is seductively elegant, with subtle, citrus-laced green apple, pear and fig flavors and light toasty oak. Most impressive on the finish, where the flavors turn delicate and linger. 600 cases produced”
“Complex, with restrained aromas, offering a graceful mix of pear, peach, fig and honeydew flavors. Shows a touch of pithiness in the texture on the finish.” 130 cases produced”
“An elegant, graceful style that’s easy to enjoy, from the initial creamy oak aromas to the gradual firming midpalate, showing off a cedary oak grip to the tannins. Drink now through 2024.”
“Dark purplish ruby; forward, ripe, cedary, blackberry fruit aroma with notes of dark chocolate, black olive, and toasty oak; full body; forward, big, rich, extracted, cedary, textured, dark fruit flavors with good depth and a trace of vanilla; medium-full to full tannin and currently a bit rough in the mouthfeel; lingering aftertaste. Very highly recommended.”
“A creamy-textured, charming style that’s easy to drink yet is deceptively complex and layered, with a mix of vanilla-scented oak and vibrant peach, nectarine, honeydew and apricot flavors. Long on the finish.”
“A Chardonnay Revolution? Rombauer Shows This Maligned Grape Doesn’t Deserve Its Bum Rap
I’ve been trying lots of Chardonnay lately. About a month ago I was served a California Chardonnay that had only the slightest oak, and I enjoyed it, so I’ve been on a mission since then to experience as many different bottles of the often-maligned grape as I can. What has happened is that I have tasted things new to me, and been reunited with some wines from producers I first encountered long ago.
In the latter category is today’s bottle, a 2013 Rombauer Carneros Chardonnay. Rombauer is a well-known name, and if you possess a copy of The Joy of Cooking you will be happy to know that there is a familial connection between the winery and the author. (Rombauer’s first wines were released in 1984 — a 1980 Cabernet Sauvignon, and a 1982 Chardonnay. Retail price for both was $12.50.)
We opened the bottle to pair with some shrimp sautéed in olive oil, and the decision was a good one. The 2013 Rombauer is full of expression, and has a creaminess that I like. The acidity makes the wine refreshing, and its notes of citrus and peach combine in a wonderful manner. The shrimp were wild, and the iodine flavor they possessed seems to mellow with the wine, a pleasant sensory experience. So, too, with the parsley sprinkled on the dish: The Chardonnay made the garnish livelier, fresher.
The wine has a lengthy finish, and 14.6 percent ABV. It would, in addition to our shrimp, pair well with butter-poached lobster and grilled fish. The 2013 is difficult to find, but the 2014 Carneros Chardonnay is available for around $36 at wine merchants and through the winery.
“Rombauer's selection as the best wine in their cellars, the 2013 Proprietary Red Blend Le Meilleur du Chai, is a blend of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon and 8% Petit Verdot aged 16 months in 100% new French oak. The most complete, the longest, the richest, with majestic blackcurrant and black raspberry fruit, nicely integrated toasty new oak, and a full-bodied, expansive and savory mouthfeel, this wine offers loads of fragrance, richness and satisfying black and blue fruit flavors. A full-bodied, opulently textured wine, it can be drunk now or cellared for another 20-25 years.”
“The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Stice Lane Vineyard, from St. Helena, aged 16 months in 100% new French oak. This is a strong effort. Dense purple to the rim with notes of licorice, blackcurrant jam, coffee and spice box, the wine is medium to full-bodied, shows sweet tannin, outstanding balance and purity and a long finish. This is an outstanding effort from the Rombauers. Drink it over the next 15 or more years.”
“From farther south in Napa, the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Atlas Peak was given the same aging of 16 months in 100% new French oak. The wine has nice notes of charcoal, blueberry and blackberry fruit, a touch of earth and spice as well as full body. It exhibits good ripeness, purity and overall richness. This should drink beautifully for another 12-15 years.”
“Lots of blackberry and blueberry character on the nose follows through to a medium body, firm tannins and a fresh finish. Linear and bright. A pretty example of the excellent 2013 vintage. Drink or hold.”
“Intense and complex, with an assertive mix of savory herb, snappy, vibrant blackberry and wild berry shaded by creamy cedary oak and a dash of vanilla and mocha, all working together seamlessly. Pushes on the finish, where graphite and crushed rock details emerge. Drink now through 2028.”
“Gorgeous Merlot with a wildly layered nose of black cherry, blackberry, moderate oak toast, soft pepper and spice. These elements are nicely integrated as flavors, adding a cola note and riding a rich texture and soft tannins through a long full flavored finish. No Cabernization here — just a pure, creamy expression of Merlot. Well done!”
“With Rombauer on the label, you might expect a full-speed-ahead, slightly sweet wine like its bombastic, butter Chardonnay. This wine is a surprise: it's subtle and complex, with a low savory note and a high floral note balancing a quiet core of dark fruit. It's not up-front sexy, but it's a wine you could keep drinking and keep finding interesting. I'm glad I tasted it blind; it's good in a way I never expected. — W. Blake Gray”
“A graceful, seductive style, with an emphasis on bold yet subtle flavors, delivering a mix of poached pear, honeydew melon and creamy oak notes. Drink now through 2018. - JL”
“Rombauer's Chardonnay is a good example of what producers could achieve from the vintage. It is a bold yet graceful wine, reliant on creamy oak...it's a rather remarkable winemakeing achievement. A graceful, seductive style, with an emphasis on bold yet subtle flavors, offering a mix of poached pear, honeydew melon and creamy oak notes. Drink now through 2018.”
“A seductive style, ultrarich, creamy, layered with jazzy oak and a core of ripe pear, peach and nectarine flavors, all focused and persistent through the long, lingering finish. Drink now.”
“Medium-light, golden yellow; earthy, apple and tropical fruit aroma with oaky overtones and a hint of butterscotch; medium-full body; spicy, toasty, green apple flavors with a slightly sweet impression in the mouthfeel; lingering aftertaste. Stylistic with prominent, buttery oak. Highly recommended.”
“Known for its luxurious style of Napa Valley cabernet, Rombauer takes a more detailed approach to this single-vineyard wine in 2012. At Stice Lane in St. Helena, the vines grow in the gravel of what was once a riverbed. And as ripe and supple as their fruit may be, this wine retains its shape and dimension, finely drawn with black-0live savor and rich tobacco scents. Lively and satisfying, this has a wild edge and the stamina to age for a few years, as well as the juiciness to enjoy now with a thick-cut T-bone.”
“The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Stice Lane Vineyard shows blackberry and blackcurrant and a hint of chocolate and mocha. This is soft, round, plush and could even pass for a Pomerol if it were French. However, it’s all Cabernet Sauvignon and, sadly, only 250 cases were made. This is probably the best Rombauer wine I’ve tasted in many a year. Drink over the next 7-8 years.”
Class Champion, Double Gold
“A Bordeaux blend that combines blackberries and blueberries with notes of graphite. The palate delivers a wine with fine polished tannins, good fruit and a nutty finish.”
“This has aromas of ripe dark fruits with terracotta and dark chocolate undertones. Medium to full-bodied, fine tannins and a medium finish. Slightly one-dimensional. Better in 2017.”
“Medium-dark ruby; attractive, forward, toasty, ripe, red and black fruit aroma with hints of dill, mint and black pepper; full body; big, rich, plush, cedary, berry fruit flavors with a stylistic trace of residual sugar and leaving a plush, slightly creamy mouthfeel; full tannin; lingering aftertast. Highly recommended. 15.9% alcohol. Blended with 7% Petite Syrah.”
“A crowd-pleasing style, openly fruity and nicely oaky, offering an up-front mix of toasty oak and exotic tropical and ripe green tree fruit. Well focused and persistent, this ends ith a touch of lemon peel and spice. Drink now through 2016.”
Double Gold Medal
Grand Champion Best of Show
“This wine will be immediately disqualified by a good many Zin lovers for the simple reason that it is slightly sweet, and, while we confess at being a little perplexed by its sugars, it is a fairly deep and well-crafted wine all the same. It smacks of berry-pie filling and vanilla, and it is noticeably hot at the finish, but it is undeniably tasty and rich. Sweet sauced pork ribs or other such savory fare will allow it to show well.”
“This ripe, exotic style boasts gobs of fruit but also a measure of finesse. Ripe, sweet-tasting flavors of pear, fig and tangerine are intense and focused, leading to a long, clean, lingering finish. Drink now through 2017.”
Best of Class & Chairman's Award (Unanimous Gold Medal)
“This trim and temperate take on Merlot steers away from high ripeness and drama and successfully aims for balance instead. Its slightly underplayed themes of red-cherry fruit are enriched with a bit of vanillin oak, and, if properly firm after its supple beginnings, it is an essentially accessible wine that will hit its peak in but a few years.”
Gold Medal Best in Show White Wine, Gold Medal Best Buy
“This elegant, focused version delivers currant and floral herb aromas and appealing cherry, caramel and spice flavors. Drink now through 2017.”
Double Gold Medal and Best In Category
Gold Medal in Chardonnay Category, Silver Medal in Best in Show White Wine Category
Silver Medal in the category of Chardonnay $25.00 and above.
Gold Medal in Cabernet Sauvignon Category, Gold Medal in Best in Show Red Wine Category
Silver Medal in the category of Zinfandel $20.00 and above
Double Gold Medal for Best In Show in the category of Cabernet Sauvignon $30.00 and above
Silver Medal in the category of Merlot $25.00 and above
Silver Medal in the category of Cabernet Sauvignon $30.00 and above
38th Most Popular Winery Brand in American Restaurant
6th Most Popular Chardonnay in American Restaurants
6th Most Popular Winery Brand in American Restaurants
3rd Most Popular Chardonnay in American Restaurant
18th Most Popular Cabernet Sauvignon and 21st Most Popular Wine by the Glass
“We heart Rombauer for chards”
3rd Most Popular Chardonnay in American Restaurants
5th Most Popular winery brand in American restaurants.
3rd Most Popular Chardonnay in American restaurants.
9th Most Popular winery brand in American restaurants.
2nd Most Popular Chardonnay in American restaurants.
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