Arnot-Roberts, Watson Ranch Chardonnay, Napa
Staff Pick

Arnot-Roberts, Watson Ranch Chardonnay, Napa - 2020

Item # 41272 750mL
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Tasting Notes

The Watson Ranch vineyard is perched on a steep hillside overlooking the San Pablo Bay in the southernmost end of the Napa Valley. The vineyard is exposed to a wind-whipped site planted in 1993 on marine deposits over limestone. This soil type is extremely rare on the North Coast and is coupled with organic farming techniques, giving this parcel great potential to produce Chardonnay of singular character, structure and nuance.

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Staff Pick Notes

Although Duncan Arnot Meyers and Nathan Lee Roberts both grew up in Napa, when these two childhood friends started to make wine together they looked further afield for their inspiration: namely, the Old World wines of the Rhône, Jura, and Burgundy. They sought marginal plots and kept things small, allowing them a very hands-on approach. Their Chardonnay comes from a high-elevation, wind-swept vineyard built on a rare bed of marine deposits and limestone. Fermentation in stainless steel gives the wine its precision while aging in neutral oak barrels lends a creamy textural quality. You'll find floral, citrus, apple, and vanilla notes. Although there's ample fruit it's finely balanced, refined, and elegant. There's no mistaking that this is a California wine, but one with a nod toward Chablis.


Astor's Glossary of Terms


California makes more wine than any other state in the United States. Not only does the state grow a variety of noble grape varieties like Pinot Noir, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, there are also plantings of lesser-known varieties such as Nebbiolo, Roussanne and Mourvèdre to name just a few.


From Champagne to Chablis, it's hard (not to mention unpleasant) to avoid this famous white variety. During a huge popularity surge beginning in the late 1980s, Chardonnay plantings have increased dramatically -- not only in California's wine country, with which the variety is nearly synonymous, but also in Burgundy (its original, Old World home) and just about everywhere else in the winemaking...

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