Grapelive Daily Pick
By Kerry Winslow
2008 Rochioli Chardonnay Russian River Valley.
Every year I journey up to the Russian River and find my way to Rochioli to pick up a few bottles at winery and enjoy the place, even though I’m on their list and get my little allocation shipped a few times a year. I like the feel of the area and of course love the wines. This year, I found sunshine, the winery cat “Sweetpea” and this new vintage of estate Chardonnay waiting for me, it was nearly heaven. The 2008 Chardonnay has ripe and vibrant flavors with good balance and freshness and looks set to be another winner in a long line of success here. The nose has white flowers, smoke, citrus and a touch of baked apple pie, leading to a rich and tangy palate of pear, peach and apple fruit with hints of fig, hazelnuts and spicy vanilla. The wine feels smooth and buttery in the mouth, but it is not flabby and is lifted by nice acidity that gives a touch of lemon curd on the finish. This full Chard is young and should gain some weight over the next year in bottle, but it is lovely now, so I don’t plan on waiting long to savor my bottles. ($36-50 Est.) 93 Points, grapelive