Decanter Scored our 2018 Vintage!
2018 “Los Alamos Vineyard” Chardonnay – 93 Points
“The nose is dominated by orange rind and starfruit with a subtle note of struck flint behind. The palate is rich, beaming and wide, exuding the sunshine and sandy soils that define this site. The Los Alamos Vineyard bottling is typically the most tropical, flashy and forward of the Chanin Chardonnays, as is the case in the 2018 vintage. 18 months in mostly neutral barrique, full malolactic fermentation.”
2018 “Bien Nacido Vineyard” Chardonnay – 94 Points
“This lively wine opens with aromas of lemon peel, white nectarine, and orange blossom. The palate is spry and citrus-driven, balanced with flavours of oyster brine, graham cracker and coconut flakes. A crisp and floral rendition of this classic site, and unfortunately the final release that will include the original, own-rooted plantings from 1973. 18 months in barrique, full malolactic fermentation.
2018 “Sanford & Benedict Vineyard” Chardonnay – 95 Points
“Aromas of moss and kumquats combine with decadently ripe, yet still refreshing, limpid fruit. The textured palate reflects the stony minerality of the nose in a snappy, svelte package. It spent 20 months in mostly neutral barrique, and is a blend of the own-rooted 1971 vines as well as younger plantings.”
2018 “Schock Family Vineyard Blanc de Noir” – 94 Points
“A first for Chanin Wine Company – 100% Pinot Noir from a site just east of the Sta. Rita Hills border, pressed directly to barrel and racked to bottle 20 months later. The Schock site consistently shows a herbal, shrubby, chaparral-like quality, which in the context of a white wine made from red grapes brings a complexity and uniqueness I find compelling. Pomegranate skin, starfruit and red apples on the palate. Two barrels produced.”
2018 “Los Alamos Vineyard” Pinot Noir – 95 Points
“The most ethereal and feminine of the 2018 Chanin red wines. Aromas of orange rind, tomato leaf and unlit incense. The palate is buoyant, fragrant and high-toned, with flavours of raspberry shrub, green pepper and iron. It unfolds impressively upon airing, and when compared to past vintages tasted from this site, it seems like the Pinot Noir at Los Alamos is starting to really come into its own. 15% whole cluster fermentation, 18 months in 15% new French oak.”
2018 “Bien Nacido Vineyard” Pinot Noir – 96 Points
“Perfumed and earth-driven with notes of rhubarb, potpourri and incense on the nose leading into red cherries, chestnuts and almond skin on the palate. Weightless yet expansive and complete. A definitive showing of this site, and sadly, the final vintage based on the original 1973 plantings which have now been removed. 35% whole cluster fermentation and 18 months in 20% new barrique.”
2018 “Sanford & Benedict Vineyard” Pinot Noir – 95 Points
“I often find this site to show somewhat backwards while young, which follows suit with the initial nose here. After a run through the rest of the Chanin lineup, aromas turn the corner to bright and lifted dried flowers. The palate is punchy with beaming fruit flavours that have impressive length. A beautiful finish of plums, tar and wet stones wraps up a great wine hidden inside of itself for the time being. Fermented 45% whole cluster and saw 25% new French oak.”
2018 “Schock Family Vineyard” Pinot Noir – 93 Points
“From a sandy site just east of the Sta. Rita Hills border, this gives off a nose of pine needles, red plums and black cherries. Its texture is forward and focused right down the center of the palate, ending with a saline, energetic finish of blueberry and apple skin. 15% whole cluster fermentation, 18 months in 10% new barrique.”
2018 “Reserve” Pinot Noir – Sonoma Coast- 94 Points
“The nose is fragrant and woody, offering aromas of bay leaves, cherry blossom and black tea. On the palate the texture is deceptively rich and supple, while still finishing on a lengthy, airy and floral note. One of the more nuanced wines in the 2018 Chanin roster, it offers a fascinating opportunity to compare with the Santa Barbara County lineup. A release exclusive to the 2018 vintage, sourced from Durrell Vineyard in the Sonoma Coast AVA. One barrel produced.”
2018 “Schock Family Vineyard” Syrah – 94 Points
“At first this was somewhat muted but it evolved non-stop over many hours covering an impressive amount of ground. Inward and brambly to begin, then extremely floral in its middle phase, before ending up in a peppery, savoury place that the wine stayed in for days to come. Interesting to taste a Syrah though the Chanin lens, and especially excited to track its progress as time passes. The only non-Burgundian varietal wine from Chanin, coming from a mainly-Pinot Noir site planted on sandy soils.
2019 Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir- 93 Points
“Equal parts juicy, luscious and fresh throughout, this release has become out of the great, consistent values found in Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir. Red fruits with fresh flowers and herbs on the nose lead to darker fruits balanced with a subtle, spice-driven grit on the palate. A blend of sites with radically different soil types, ranging from diatomaceous earth, shale, clay and sand.”