2004 Los Carneros Chardonnay
Chardonnay •Catherine's Vineyard
California: Sonoma County: Carneros
What We Say
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REMEMBER MOM ALERT!: With Mother’s Day fast approaching, show her you love her and have us dispatch her a few bottles of today’s great wine
SUPERIOR WINE ALERT: Today’s wine is a superb example of California Chardonnay! It is so good that even Agent Red, our resident red wine Spy, was blown away
SAVINGS ALERT: Enjoy Free Ground Shipping on today’s wine when you order six bottles or more. Use promotional code: SONOMASPY
Mission Codename: Agent Red goes to school!
Operative: Agent Red?
Objective: Send Agent Red into the field to find a white wine that even he loves
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Bonneau Wines
Wine Subject: 2004 Los Carneros Chardonnay
Winemaker: John Bambury
Agent Red, our resident red wine expert, prides himself on his ability to locate the finest red wines for our Operatives. Because Central Command believes that all of its agents should have the ability to spy great wines of any varietal, Agent Red was sent outside of his comfort zone to find a superior white wine. He returned, victorious with today’s incredible Carneros Sonoma Chardonnay from Bonneau Wines. Read his tasting profile and mission report below
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Glistening yellow golden in color, with a springy surface and fat, widely-spaced legs that sink silkily down the glass
Smell – Beautifully bright and fresh fruit aromas of apple, blended tropical fruit, creamy apple custard (is there such a thing?!), caramel, vanilla and citrus leaves
Feel – Silky and smooth, this wine absolutely glides across the entire palate, starting cool and light and then gripping slightly at the mid-palate
Taste – Delicious golden apple-butter and tropical fruits lead off, then subtle oak, buttered pear and pineapple couple with a medium acidity that adds to the wines complexity
Finish – This wine finishes smooth and creamy with a fresh and fruity quality
Conclusion – In a word, Fantastic!. 3rd generation winemaker John Bambury is to be commended with this amazing effort. Those of you that know me, know that it take a great white wine to impress me. This is a wine of exceptional feel, flavor and aromas, delivering a complete package that is a refreshin and deeply interesting wine to drink. I find many California Chards to be over-oaked and overly-buttery beasts with no subtlety or complexity. Still others can be flat and, well, boring. This Chardonnay is one to get excited over, whether you are a Chardonnay lover or not.
You would think that I would finally get it through my thick skull that there really are such things as great white wines. With Central Command sending me on more and more white wine missions, I certainly am exposed to some remarkable whites.
Maybe I am being too true to my name, but I continue to resist. Today’s wine may finally drive it into my thick skull that there are white wines that are interesting enough to please even me.
John Bambury is part of that rare American breed who has generations of winemaking in his blood. His family, originally from the bordeaux region of France, settled in Sonoma county in the 1920s, where they farmed a small parcel of land, growing grapes for prestigious wineries in Napa and Sonoma. In 2002, John created his own winery and today he makes wonderful wines. Even those white ones that please even me!
I enjoyed this wine with the unusual pairing of British pubb-style Baked Beans on Toast. You know what? It totally worked and the combination was a delicious surprise! John recommends a more traditional pairing of light pasta, poultry and veal or brie and crackers. I suspect that this wine, with its balanced acids and brightness, would work with almost any pairing. Let me know what you try this wine with!
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of the Bonneau can be seek on this satellite photo satellite photo
What the Winery Says
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Awards & Accolades:
DOUBLE GOLD MEDAL WINNER – 2007 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. The largest wine competition of American Wines in the world!
About This Wine:
All the grapes for our flagship Chardonnay wine were hand harvested from the Catherine Bonneau Vineyard and carefully transported to the winery. After gently pressing whole clusters, the juice was fermented in 100% French oak barrels.
This wine shows a full, lemon-yellow color. Aromas display ripe pineapples, lemon zest intermixed with white peach and accents of toast and hazelnuts. On the palate the wine presents succulent citrus and tropical flavors tastefully framed by the delicate oak, with a creamy round texture. The finish is lush and manifests a delightful suggestion of vanilla bean.
Our finest effort yet.
About Bonneau Wines:
In 1921 August and Catherine Bonneau purchased 70 acres of land in Schellville, about 8 miles south of the town of Sonoma, California. This was a very remote area at the time, requiring a full day’s travel time from San Francisco. This area reminded the Bonneaus of the Bordeaux region of France near the area where they were born.
The Bonneaus farmed the land, had a dairy and ran a small country store/deli. Although the vineyard has long since replaced the dairy, the members of the family still operate businesses that the Bonneaus started.
In 1989 their daughter, Yvonne, fulfilled Catherine’s vision of having a vineyard. She planted 30 acres of Chardonnay grapes on premium rootstock. Yvonne, as matriarch of the family farm, began supplying some of the best known wineries in Sonoma and Napa. The vineyard consistently received high praise for the quality of the fruit. Yvonne looked forward to the day the family could produce their own wines.
In 2001, her son, John Bambury, began spearheading the wine making operations on behalf of Yvonne’s four children by introducing Bonneau Wines with the 2002 Los Carneros, Chardonnay. Since then Bonneau Wines has produced Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel. The family’s commitment to making fine wines has already been recognized by wine aficionados, critics and everyday wine lovers alike.
About the Winery:
Bonneau Winery is operated by the third generation of Bonneaus with family history dating back to the early 1920s in the Sonoma – Los Carneros appellation. The Bonneaus originally came to America from the vineyard lands of Bordeaux, France and began farming a 70 acre parcel of land just south of the town of Sonoma. After growing and providing Chardonnay grapes to several well known wineries in both Sonoma & Napa, the family launched its own label in 2002.
Bonneau sources its red varietal grapes from top vineyards in Sonoma, Napa, & Amador counties. Winery operations take place in Kenwood. Barrels are aged in caves sunk deep in the foothills located on the west side of the Sonoma Valley.
John Bambury is the Director of Winemaking and handles all the winemaking responsibilities.