Last year, I had the great good fortune to meet Tim and Jackie Reuling, owners of one of the most lauded vineyard in the entire state of California and source of some of the most profound Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays the Golden State has to offer. They are a passionate, charming couple, generous and supremely friendly, and over the years, their vineyard has supplied grapes for legendary producers like Aubert, Peter Michael, and more. Now, with winemaker Matt Taylor, they are producing their own wines.
I was recently sent a sample of their inaugural release Chardonnay 2012, a wine that I tasted before it had been bottled and that was so profound I immediately signed up for their mailing list (something I rarely do) in order to have access to a few bottles. And in all honestly, I have to admit I was a bit nervous about tasting the wine now that it had been bottled: The barrel sample was so profound that I had spent the intervening year and a half building it up in my mind. How, I wondered, would the finished product live up to that?
Turns out I had nothing to worry about: It’s just as delicious as I remembered—even more so. I’m already thirsty for next year’s release.
Reuling Vineyard Chardonnay 2012
Sonoma Coast, California
Fabulously complex aromas of warm buttermilk biscuits, lemon clotted cream, melon, acacia, orange blossom, and a hint of white licorice lead to a palate bursting with lemon-tinged honey, dulce de leche, and vanilla pod, all zipped up the middle with excellent minerality, lemon verbena, and lime. The finish of this bright yet rich wine hints at a subtle sense of spiciness, and lingers for a remarkably long time. What a phenomenal balance of power and finesse. Drink now - 2022+.