2011 Rutherford Ranch Chardonnay – Napa Valley – Review

By Duane Pemberton
Winery website: http://www.rutherfordwine.com

Rutherford Ranch wines is winery based in St. Helena California and has been family-run for over three generations. Located right on the Silverado Trail, its a favorite winery destination of locals as well as tourists. This fine little bottle of Chardonnay does a good job of showcasing that Napa can put out some good quality for the money.

Technical Data:

  • Appellation: Napa Valley
  • Blend: 100% Chardonnay
  • Agine:  70% stainless steel aged, 30% barrel aged sur-lees for 8 monthsAlcohol: 13.5%
  • Price: $16

Nose: Banana peel, butterscotch, vanilla, honeydew and cantaloupe along with a hint of a lightly-toasted marshmallow.

Taste: A rather lively chardonnay that brings many of the elements so many “California-style Chardonnay” fans love such as creaminess, mouthfeel and texture but not in an overkill, “Kendall Jackson” kind of way. It’s a very approachable, food-friendly wine that has all lovely elements of this varietal and tosses in just enough oak, lees and malolactic fermentation to keep the California Chardonnay lovers coming back for more.

W.E.P. Rating: 100%