2018 Parmelee Hill Vineyard Sonoma Valley Chardonnay
Chardonnay •Parmelee Hill Vineyard
California: Sonoma County: Sonoma Valley
Return of the Jed
Check this out.
See those words “Parmelee Hill” on the label? You know who else proudly displayed those two words on their Chardonnay?
The one and only Kistler.
Now flashback to last year when we quietly snuck a tiny Kistler allocation into the Store. A savvy few spotted it and quickly soaked up every bottle within hours. Poof, gone. Well, today you can get a Chardonnay that flashes a similar style, from the same vineyard Kistler used, made by a talented winemaker, for an absolute steal. Or should we say STEELE?
Now naturally, this isn’t quite Kistler BUT it seriously overdelivers for the price.
This comes to us from Jed Steele. He’s been making wine since 1968 when he kicked things off at Stony Hill Vineyard in Napa, crafting some of the most age-worthy whites in the history of California winemaking. When you do something, anything, for 50+ years consistently you get pretty darn good at it. Of course, it helps when you are a doppelganger as the head winemaker for Kendall-Jackson with access to some of the best fruit in the region. Jed is intimately connected with Sonoma Valley, having farmed all over it for over 30 years. That includes the famous Durell Vineyard and Parmelee Hill just adjacent to it.
A bright shade of yellow gold with vibrant streaks of honey and hay. Citrusy and tropical simultaneously on the nose with Meyer lemon, passion fruit, honeydew, nectarine, and nutmeg. Bright acidity, medium-plus weight, and a kiss of butterscotch framed by roasted nuts are highlights of the palate impressions. The finish is crazy long, complex, and rich with an upside of ten plus years or more? This should easily last until 2028 should have you have the means to stow it away. Good luck because it’ll be hard to resist. Should you give in to the temptation, make sure to pair a rich dish. Lemon veal scaloppini drenched in a creamy mushroom sauce would be ideal for instance.
Jed describes his process as such: “All of our single vineyard-designated Chardonnays are 100% barrel fermented in French oak. We use 30% new barrels each vintage and the wines are in barrel for 10-12 months. The wines are then bottled without tight filtration. These may show a slight haze, but this is merely a mark of gentle handling. These Chardonnays should age for ten years or more.”
This one’s for all you Chardonnay insiders, geeks, and afficionados. At the release price of $38, it was a solid deal. At our price - HALF OFF - it’s a total, complete, utter no brainer.
A bright shade of yellow gold with vibrant streaks of honey and hay
Citrusy and tropical with Meyer lemon, passion fruit, honeydew, nectarine, and nutmeg
Bright acidity, medium-plus weight, and a kiss of butterscotch, framed by roasted nuts
Crazy long, complex, and rich with an upside of ten plus years or more?
Ideal with lemon veal scaloppini drenched in a creamy mushroom sauce
What the Winery Says
- Jed Steele
- 100% Chardonnay
- Sonoma Valley, Sonoma County
- Parmelee Hill Vineyard
- Vine age
- 30 years average
- 3 tons/acre
- Total acidity
- 7.1 g/L
- Residual sugar
- 2.25 g/L
- 12 months
- 30% new French oak
- 7 barrels