2019 Turley Wine Cellars, The White Coat, White Wine, California.
The Turley White Coat is a strikingly lush and opulent white wine, hand crafted by winemaker Tegan Passalacqua from predominantly Roussanne, Grenache Blanc and Vermentino, a similar combination to some famous Chateauneuf du Pape Blancs with this 2019 version being an exceptional full bodied wine that shows the vintage’s vibrant fruit intensity and underlying balance with an impactful presence in the glass. In classic Roussanne fashion this White Coat shows thick layers of apricot, lemon, clove spice, ginger, star anise, peach pit, marzipan and almond oil along with some zesty tangerine/citrus, melon, apple and salty wet stones that highlight the addition of the Grenache Blanc and Vermentino in this impressive Turley offering. There is a nice play between all the elements here with the wine giving the impression of oily vinous depth on the lavish palate, but has well judged acidity that adds a brilliant pop to this wine and there is a savory bacon like note that comes through that contrasts well with the richness of fruit. Passalacqua notes that this wine saw an all native yeast fermentation, with mainly neutral French oak aging, but with about quarter of the wine being fermented and raised in concrete eggs, which he started with the previous vintage and looks to continue as the results have been incredibly compelling, especially in this 2019, which is by far the best White Coat I’ve tried.
The White Coat’s blend has changed over the years, but I think Turley has found the perfect combination of varietals now to make a luminous and luxurious Chateauneuf style California wine. The White Coat, which is named for, as the winery notes, Larry Turley’s past career as an Emergency Room physician and is composed mainly of classic white Rhône grapes from three of theirs Estate vineyards and terroirs stretching through multiple regions of California. The rich and textured body is from the Roussanne, which is the dominate grape, sourced from the Rattlesnake Ridge Vineyard on Howell Mountain on the volcanic based soils in Napa Valley. The density here is, as Turley suggests, moderated by the fresh acidity and structure provided by the inclusion of Grenache Blanc that is grown in the calcareous soils of the Pesenti Vineyard in Paso Robles. The golden hued White Coat blend is rounded out with a touch of zesty mineral intense Vermentino (also known as Rolle in parts of France) sourced from the granitic and quartz-laden Cobb Vineyard in the Amador County, in the Sierra Foothills, plus in certain years there is a splash of Verdejo too, making this wine even more uniquely Californian. The White Coat, which was saw 15 months of barrel time is a wine that deserves your attention and a wine that would be sublime with lobster and or grilled swordfish, and while Turley is known mostly for their famed Zinfandel and Petite Sirah bottlings, this is not a wine to be overlooked!
($35 Est.) 94 Points, grapelive