Rombauer Vineyards began producing Chardonnay in 1982. In 1990, the Rombauer family made their first Chardonnay from the Carneros region, where San Pablo Bay meets the southern end of Napa and Sonoma valleys. There, the cool climate and clay soils offer ideal conditions for growing superior Chardonnay with the Rombauer hallmarks — intense fruit flavors balanced by fresh acidity.
VineyardsThe fruit for this wine comes from vineyards in the Carneros region owned by the Rombauer family and select growers including the Sangiacomo family, long-term grower partners who have farmed this land for three generations.
WinegrowingA cool spell in August stalled harvest a bit at the outset, but a warm September brought a mad dash to the finish. All in all, 2016 was another high-quality vintage despite small volumes for some varietals due to cool, rainy weather at flowering. Sustainable farming practices throughout the growing season were tailored to each block with the assistance of aerial photos produced using NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) technology. The fruit was hand-picked at night and sorted in the vineyard.
WinemakingThe grapes were gently whole-cluster pressed while the fruit was still cool. The juice was pumped to tank to cold-settle overnight before it was racked to barrel for primary and malolactic fermentation. The lees were stirred every two weeks to give the wine rich flavors and a creamy texture.
Tasting NotesEnticing aromas of vanilla, melon and mango are layered with apricot, creme brulee, butter and a slight minerality. Those scents are echoed as flavors on the creamy, rich palate, along with peach, pie crust and baking spices. The long, smooth finish is marked by mouthwatering acidity.
92 Points – Wine Spectator – 2016 Carneros Chardonnay
Rich and creamy, with seductive vanilla-scented oak that adds texture and nuance to the solid core of green apple, pear and melon flavors