2009 HdV, Chardonnay “Hyde Vineyard” Carneros, Napa Valley. (Hyde & de Villaine)
I’ve been lucky to have sampled the first to the latest from Hyde and de Villaine, and while all the wines have ben interesting and well crafted over the years, it is their Chardonnay that has always stood out and it still does. The Hyde Vineyards and Aubert de Villaine, the managing director of the fabled Domaine de la Romanee-Conti, Wine project seemed an odd arrangement at first but it turns out, de Villaine’s American wife Pamela is cousins with the Hyde’s and it is a worldly family affair and what looks like a very successful one with some great wines being made by their winemaker St├ęphane Vivier, a Burgundy native that has experience with vines in Pommard and Chassagne as well as New Zealand and the Sonoma Coast. This group had some talent to say the least and the 2009 HdV Chardonnay shows it well with wonderful depth and texture along with elegance and artisan charms. The nose has white flowers, mineral tones and apples leading to a lemon kissed palate with pear, fig, apple and tropical essences with a creamy smooth body that while rich is still not wanting for acidity or life. There is subtle oak shadings and brioche adding warmth and the fruit lingers well on after the last sip of this fine Chardonnay.
($60 Est.) 94 Points, grapelive

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