Russian River Valley
2019 may stand out as one of the more exceptional vintages in recent memory. Cooler temperatures and stable weather for most of the growing season allowed for slow maturation of flavors without any heat events spiking sugar accumulation in the berries. Although 2019 also saw the devastating Kincade fire in Sonoma County, Pinot Noir and most Chardonnays in the county were harvested by then, so the smoke did not affect the grapes. Overall, look for wines with slightly lower alcohol, higher but integrated acids, and a depth of flavor that you would probably have to go back several vintages to find an equal.
“Lots of pear, honeyed apple, spice, and brioche notes emerge from the 2019 Chardonnay Russian River Valley, a layered, medium to full-bodied Chardonnay offering integrated, moderate acidity, plenty of texture, and a good finish. It lacks that extra something found in the others, but it’s certainly a beautiful, rich, textured, yet still light on its feet Chardonnay with loads to love.”
– 93pts, Jeb Dunnuck