2014 Wind Racer Chardonnay Anderson Valley
This small project was born from two far larger ones……Peggy Furth (and her late husband Fred) started Chalk Hill Winery, the Chardonnay specialist that once dominated the high-end market for that market before its sale some years ago, and Barbara Banke, the widow of one Jess Stonestreet Jackson, a guy who also knew a fair bit about making Chardonnay. With their futures well-secured, the two women, with wine forever in their DNA, decided to embark on a project of their own- one dedicated to their separate but equal vinous passions….Peggy’s for the wines of the Russian River Valley and Barbara’s for Mendocino County’s Anderson Valley. They’ve concentrated their efforts on making two wines each using top-notch fruit from their favorite appellations and the results have been inspiring.
A recent tasting of all four showed that these two experts have not lost their touch! Our preference, though, was definitely slanted towards Banke’s efforts from the Anderson Valley- a Chardonnay and Pinot Noir both worth stocking the larder with! The Chardonnay effortlessly blended sophistication with power- just the right amount of oak, gorgeous green apple and apricot fruit and the perfect hit of lemon crème brulee to bring the wine to a lovely finish. Chardonnays at this price point usually do one thing well and not all and that’s what we found so impressive. It’s a very fine value.