There are chardonnay goals… and then there are chardonnay goals. Finding people to agree on Napa cab or Bordeaux is fairly easy; finding people to agree on Zin or Petite Sirah can be a bit tougher; finding people to agree on syrah or grenache usually exemplifies the two styles and their fans; Cab-franc is rarely divisive; Pinot can be a pricking-point for true fans; but people often have a hard time putting into words WHY they love a chard. Of course, I’m eliminating all the “looking for a nice, oaky and buttery chardonnay” drones because their lives don’t matter. Likewise the *Stainless Steel* fanatics, because: let’s face it: if you’re putting “Stainless Steel” on your front label, you have already failed at the Chardonnay-game. And when it comes to REAL chardonnay–something produced in probably only 1% of California situations, things like *racy acidity*, *etching minerality*, *subtle vegetal* and *barrel complement* pop up, but no one item steals the show. It’s a culmination of GETTING IT RIGHT–of melding every shelf of criticism perfectly into the whole. A few wines do it. It’s rare–but it happens. And this especially goes out to all the alleged Chablis fanatics, who literally WILL NOT (and I see this every day on social media) touch a California chard because it’s “improper”. Their words–their loss.
You can find no fault with this wine. From the 8YO glow of gold to the nose pining match-head and graphite against gritty mineral and the fruit *not-quite* tropical, *not-quite* floral, *not-quite* berry, *not-quite* oaky, *not-quite* polished, *not-quite* abrasive, *not-quite* ANYTHING on the 300 faces in the Chardonnay section at Albertson’s. And at the same time–let’s be honest–not quite Chablis.
Starting at hi-cellar temp on this thing and working my way down into the hi-50’s, the plushness it delivers is nothing short of fascinating. Amazing. Spell-binding. Spectacular. I have plenty of words for this wine. And while Rom-Bitch will decry it for “tasting like sauv-blanc”, the kind of grainy gunfire it exposes the palate to is nothing short of magnificent. The bitter ire of oily pitch and the slather of indescribable fruit, the whole thing coating rich and buttery across the tongue while sharp pangs press points of wonder around the edges, framing and holding the art under leggy glass. I don’t have to sell this wine. Every single one of my loyal followers know this wine and my words are meaningless. And if you haven’t experienced it? Well…..
2014 LIQUID FARM ‘White Hill’ Chardonnay Santa Rita Hills Santa Barbara Co. 13.5