2016 'Etre' Sonoma Coast Chardonnay
Chardonnay •Sangiacomo & Durell Vineyards
California: Sonoma County: Sonoma Coast
For good raison
Phenomenal giveaways are our raison d’être Operatives… and - a micro-production Chardonnay, from a winemaker at the top of his game, normally $40, but $19 today - is the definition of that!
Throw in some respectable scores - 91 and 93 points from Advocate & Enthusiast and you have a winning formula.
Être means “to be” in French, and it befittingly captures the essence of Chardonnay in its pure, unoaked form. Wine Enthusiast with “elegance in spades” captures this perfectly. Definitely NOT for those who wants a thick, rich, buttery Chardonnay but if you live for that scintillating, electrifying, Chablis-like style, you need this in your life.
Is that Lemonheads candy? Or lemon zest? Or just freshly made lemonade? You get the drift, basically citrus galore, even lemongrass!! And pears, maybe some fresh sliced honeycrisp apples too. Layer in a fascinating salty sea breeze type minerality and frame it all with a zippy acidity. What you have here will drink well now and will continue to do so over a few more years. Any seafood, and particularly fresh shellfish would be the perfect match.
Jeff Gaffner has a storied career, starting at Chateau St. Jean where he lead the team responsible for a Wine Spectator’s Wine of the Year. He’s also highly regarded consultant for Ram’s Gate, Black Kite and several other high-profile producers. Saxon Brown is his own baby though, and one can tell here. His reputation means access to great vineyards such as Sangiacomo and Durell, where this hails from.
A happy Robert Parker once put it so brilliantly, “I have had these wines year in and year out, and Saxon Brown turns out outstanding efforts. Moreover, their prices are not out of line, especially at this level of quality.”
Need we say more? All we got will be gone as not much of it was made, so the nimble will win again.
93 Points – Wine Enthusiast
“Low in oak and high in acidity, this is an earthy herbal white that’s stony and salty, capturing full-on the spirit of the ocean. Light and lemony, it has complexity and elegance in spades.”
91 Points – Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
“Has a delicate nose of pear and apple fruit with orange blossom, stone and hints of baker’s yeast. Medium-bodied with lovely mineral and floral hints, it finishes on a yeasty note. Drink 2019-2023.”
Bright white gold with glimmers of platinum and hay
Is that Lemonheads candy? Or lemon zest? Or just freshly made lemonade? Citrus galore, even lemongrass!
Pears, fresh sliced honeycrisp apples, a fascinating salty sea breeze type minerality, zippy acidity
Lingers very long given no oak influence, will continue to drink well over a few more years
Any seafood, and particularly fresh shellfish would be the perfect match
What the Winery Says
- Jeff Gaffner
- 100% Chardonnay
- Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County
- Sangiacomo & Durell Vineyards
- Harvest date
- September 7, 2016
- Brix at harvest
- Total acidity
- 6.8 g/L
- Bottling date
- July 17, 2017
- 8 months
- 100% stainless steel