“Chardonnay wine is the superstar in Santa Barbara, one of the most diverse regions to produce some of the best grapes in the world,” said moderator Elaine C. Brown at the Santa Barbara Vintners Road Trip Chardonnay seminar. “The wine region is located along the coastal range of North and South America. The transverse mountain range turns fully from a north-south orientation to an east-west angle. It’s the only wine region bordering the Pacific Ocean on two sides. Clouds roll over the top of the mountains with an ocean influence.”
Sandhi, Chardonnay Sta. Rita Hills 2015
Sashi Moorman and Rajat Parr make this elegant and rich style of Chardonnay, powerful and tense with light reduction and a palate of mango and pineapple, with white floral tones flowing beautifully into a balanced, acidic, minerally finish and long length. Could easily be confused with a good Meursault. Great value.
94 pts. Decanter
Sandhi, Chardonnay Santa Barbara County 2016
The 2016 Chardonnay (Santa Barbara County) is a soft, easy going wine to drink now and over the next few years, while the orchard fruit and floral notes retain their freshness. This is a more open-knit style relative to the more focused Sta. Rita Hills appellation Chardonnay.
90 pts. Vinous
LaFond St. Rita Hills Chardonnay 2016
Lemon peels, sea salt, hazelnut and honeysuckle aromas play up the more voluptuous side of Chardonnay, and hint at marshmallow without going so far. The palate is surprisingly zippy with acid and Meyer lemon zest, but also shows richer hints of browned butter and toasted almond toward the finish. It's a crowd-pleaser for many tastes.
Santa Barbara Winery Chardonnay 2017
All the grapes were pressed as whole clusters with 53% of the wine fermented in stainless steel tanks. The remaining 47% was barrel fermented and underwent malolactic fermentation. The barrelled wine was aged 'sur lie' and its lees regularly stirred to impart flavor and complexity.The result is a wine that is bright and flavorful with a great deal of fruit intensity. We consider this our trademark Chardonnay, a wine we have consistently produced year after year.
90 pts. Wine Enthusiast Editor's Choice