Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Chardonnay 2015

Deep gold color; apple pie, pineapple, vanilla, pear on the nose; green apple, pineapple, vanilla, hazelnut, crème brulée, integrated oak on the palate.

Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Chardonnay 2015

Dry; bold, rich, full-bodied, lush. Good acidity (3.47 pH). Made with 99% chardonnay, 1% sémillon. Seventy percent of the juice fermented in French oak barrels, 16% new. The balance fermented in stainless steel to retain brightness and fruit purity. Partial malolactic fermentation. Aged on the lees for nine months for depth and complexity.

Grapes sources throughout Napa area: 68% Los Carneros, 8% Stags Leap District, 8% Russian River Valley (Sonoma), 7% Yountville, and tiny percentage from other vineyards. Mondavi has long championed a natural farming approach. The operation is Certified California Sustainable Winegrowing, is a Napa Green Certified Winery, and is Napa Green Certified Land. The winery’s website notes an extensive list of ongoing environmental projects.

Robert Mondavi built his namesake winery in 1966 with the expressed purpose of making wines in the Napa Valley that would compete on the world stage. Today, the Robert Mondavi Winery company remains a master at superb, large-scale production of wine that faithfully expresses the varietal or wine style, a legacy of the founder, who revolutionized wine making and wine marketing.

Mondavi’s Geneviève Hanssens

Constellation Brands purchased Robert Mondavi in 2004 (for $1.03 billion in cash; Robert died in 2008). The goal of affordable quality remains, as do key personnel who were mentored by Robert. Geneviève Janssens is the director of winemaking. She started at Mondavi in 1978 and was named Winemaker of the Year by Wine Enthusiast in 2010.

Robert Mondavi Winery Napa Valley Chardonnay 2015 rich, silky, flavorful easy drinker. Classic Napa chardonnay; avoids the over-oaked, stick of butter flaws. Pair with oily flaky fish; rich fish entrées; fish cooked with herbs; seafood—salmon, lobster, crab, shrimp, scallops, clams; chicken breast; pork chops; soft cheeses. $19-24

Robert Mondavi website

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