Ramey Hudson Vineyard Chardonnay 2008
When it is right, Chardonnay from Lee Hudson's vineyard can rank with the very best in the state, and this latest working from David Ramey is right in so many ways. It is a very full and yet very well-balanced wine whose immense fruit and flamboyant oak combine for show-stopping richness, but it is its impeccable, acid-firmed structure that separates it from a good many other very rich Chardonnays and earns it this month's top honors. Its combination of complexity, vitality and fruity depth is bound to tempt early drinking, but collectors be warned, it will only get better with age.
Light, hazy yellow. High-pitched, pure aromas of Meyer lemon, green apple and honeysuckle, complicated by intense minerality and a hint of iodine. Incisive and focused on the palate, offering tangy citrus flavors and a strong undercurrent of smoky minerals. Very young and in need of some bottle age to stretch out but there's great potential here.
Normally I see more stylistic differences between the Hudson and Hyde Chardonnays, but in 2008, they are more similar than usual. The 2008 Chardonnay Hudson Vineyard exhibits honeyed citrus, smoky hazelnut and buttered brioche characteristics in a medium to full-bodied, flavorful, rich, layered format. It should drink nicely for 4-5 years.
Complex aromas of hazelnut, citrus blossom, spice and lemon meringue give this a tight flavor focus. This is medium- to full-bodied, with a long, clean, lingering finish. Drink now through 2017. 1,100 cases made.