B-21 Top Recommendation
Russian River pioneer Gary Farrell had his own ideas in the 1970s about producing his site-specific Chardonnay – he wanted to pick his grapes earlier, limiting tropical fruit nuances and ensuring balanced acidity. Even after Farrell sold the winery 20 years ago, it has continued to produce what is often described as a Chablis-style Chardonnay under Theresa Heredia, nominated as 2020 Winemaker of the Year by the Wine Enthusiast. Theresa's winemaking pedigree includes time at Joseph Phelps, where she crafted the first releases of the Freestone Chardonnay and Pinot Noir that ultimately resulted in the opening of the new Freestone winery in the Sonoma Coast in 2007.
Like Farrell, Heredia believes the wine begins in the vineyards – in this case, sourcing grapes for this Chardonnay blend from some of the most iconic sites in the Russian River including Rochioli, Olivet Lane, Durell, Bacigalupi and Ritchie. She also continues his practice of picking earlier, capturing more vibrant, fresh aromatics, and highlighting mineral and citrus as opposed to riper golden fruit. To this she adds some extra time on the lees to add depth and complexity of flavor. The end result delivers exceptional value in this Editor's Choice Russian River Chardonnay that is crisp, elegant and well structured.