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  Sonoma County     [all categories]
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  A week in Sonoma/Napa - Where to go for good ol' traditional oakey Cali Chard?

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Author Topic:   A week in Sonoma/Napa - Where to go for good ol' traditional oakey Cali Chard?
yesilovewine
Member
posted 03-29-2012 12:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for yesilovewine     Edit/Delete Message
Kate, if you're still out there and haven't left yet, I was reading "California Wines for Dummies" recently and the following are their top few picks for Napa/Sonoma Chards:
Freemark Abbey,Markham, Chappellet, Trefethen, ( for Napa); Arrowood, Chalk Hill Estate,Miramar Torres, Dehlinger ( Sonoma).
This is a smattering from their suggestions and addresses several price-points.

IP: 71.65.250.8

carjeff
Member
posted 03-19-2012 09:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for carjeff   Click Here to Email carjeff     Edit/Delete Message
Hi Kate,

Here are some Chards that I would recommend;

Chalk Hill
Landmark
Rochioli
Etude
Ferrari-Carano

Over in Napa I wouldn't miss Rombauer.

IP: 155.178.6.10

Hawkeye
Member
posted 03-19-2012 07:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hawkeye   Click Here to Email Hawkeye     Edit/Delete Message
Hi Kate,

I think you will find that the majority of Napa wineries will have both whites (chard, sauv blanc) along with the reds. So you really don't need to select by color, most will have both.

We just found some excellent chard at Venge and Spottswoode. Bennett Land has a good chard also.

-Hawkeye

IP: 68.169.184.68

yesilovewine
Member
posted 03-15-2012 08:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for yesilovewine     Edit/Delete Message
Hi Kate! Glad you made it back.
I just happen to have been doing some spring cleaning and came across an older issue of Wine Spectator that focuses on Chardonnay.
Its the July 31, 2009 issue, so if you have access to the WS website its probably archived there.
Just from a very brief glance, I recognize Hanzell and MacRostie, which are both Sonoma Valley wineries. I THINK that MacRostie may have a tasting facility in the 8th Street Wineries complex, but don't bet on me, ok? I recall seeing their barrels there, but they may not taste there.
An older issue, June 15, 2007, features Sonoma County and offers suggestions for lodging and dining as well as winery visits. Some of the wineries mentioned may no longer exist as written ( through buy-outs, etc) but you may get some ideas from there as well. From that group, the ones I recognize which may interest you are Hartford and Ferrari-Carano. I've been to neither but heard good stuff of both.
The Jan 15 issue from this year is the top 100 issue, and I see that Peter Michael has placed 3rd with their Chardonnay, Ma-Belle-Fille. I first read of this winery about 3 years ago and they are consistently high scoring with the wine pros. I believe that you could find something for your dad as well as yourself here...it sounds great and they guys are very nice; I had contacted them to ask where to taste their wine back then. I believe they are worth a look, and if you go, please caome back and share as I still have them as a "winery of interest" on my Sonoma bucket list.
Also, try Roessler Cellars in the town of Sonoma. They only serve Chards and Pinots, so you can both have something to enjoy there. I just learned that this winery is in partnership with Hall ( as I Kathryn Hall, the very well known Napa vintner), which may explain why the pinots we had there were so good...and we are definitly NOT pinot folks or weren't until we went there. Now we've decided that we can be enticed to a pinot under the right conditions .
In the north of Sonoma Valley, Ledson ( the castle) has a huge assortment of wines to choose from in the tasting room...it used to be in excess of 70...and so that would be another place to go where each of you is likely to find something to enjoy. I can highly recommend their Barbera to you, and most of the reds. They also make a very good Sauv. Blanc, or did, so your dad may want to give that a try.
Last thought...also in Sonoma town...actually two thoughts ....Find the new Haywood tasting room, sorry I don't know its exact location but it hadn't opened when we were last there. Very nice wines bioth red and white. Also, look up Two Amigos, a second venture for Squire Fridell of Glen Lyon. Two Amigos was not yet available when we were there, but if I understand correctly, the Glen Lyon wines may be available for tasting ( but they are currently sold only to wine club members by allocation) and if so, I suspect that you can find something there you like as well.
Before you go, check to see if your VISA card is the "Signature" series...if so, that can garner you a great number of discounts on tasting fees and purchases.
You know, Kate, I don't know why I didn't think of them before, but Chalk Hill would probably fit your bill nicely.

[This message has been edited by yesilovewine (edited 03-15-2012).]

IP: 71.65.250.8

Stoliraz
Junior Member
posted 03-14-2012 07:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Stoliraz     Edit/Delete Message
Hi yesilovewine and thank you for your message/reply & I'm sorry I haven't been able to login until now... Things been hectic and haven't had a chance to sit down and research/plan...

Since we have 5-6 days, I think I'm going to book one 'join-in' tour for Sonoma and one private car service tour for Napa. The rest, I'll drive us around to do own tour.

Since this trip's focus is on my father, while we'd like to do more of Chard, my preference is Reds so I'm hoping we get to have some tasty Red wine also.

It's now only a couple weeks away, and I can hardly wait. I also need to get cracking on finalizing plans :-)

Kate

IP: 76.119.27.114

yesilovewine
Member
posted 02-09-2012 06:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for yesilovewine     Edit/Delete Message
Hi Kate and welcome to the message board. Glad to have you here.
I am not a big fan of the oakey Chards, but the Russian River part of Sonoma County is known for its Chardonnay production so you will definitely be able to find some there.
The area around Sebastopol and Forestville is where I would focus if I were on a Chardonnay hunt and I would shoot for visits to either of the Dutton wineries, Lynmar, and Russian Hill for sure. Though known for their sparklers, Iron HOrse offers still chards as well, so you might try them. I found the sparklers VERY acid-driven so I would say don't go there first
as it will shred your tastebuds. Their still wine may be softer, so check the website tasting notes, or call them.
You might also want to visit Simi and Clos du Bois in the upper county near Healdsburg.
You can get a good feel for what the experts like by checking out the results from Harvest Fair, to be found on either the Press Democrat website or the Harvest Fair website.
Are you going to focus solely on chardonnay while you are visiting, or do you have other interests as well?
Also, did you want to do any winery tours?

You know, I recalled reading a post about buttery chards and found several on trip advisor. If you do a forum search for "buttery chardonnay" on the sonoma forum you will find some excellent help. But come back here, too!

[This message has been edited by yesilovewine (edited 02-09-2012).]

[This message has been edited by yesilovewine (edited 02-09-2012).]

[This message has been edited by yesilovewine (edited 02-09-2012).]

IP: 76.182.6.182

Stoliraz
Junior Member
posted 02-08-2012 05:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Stoliraz     Edit/Delete Message
I am treating my father for a week of wine trip in Sonoma/Napa for his retirement..this will be father-daughter trip :-) He always loved oakey, traditional California Chardonnay and wondering which winery we should try to visit during our stay. Any suggestions?

This is our first time in wine country, so ANY suggestions you can share would be greatly appreciated.

Kate

IP: 76.119.27.114

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