2004 Chardonnay, Hyde Vineyard, Napa-Carneros
Bright yellow, with a bit less gold than the '05. Knockout nose combines orange zest, clove, musky oatmeal and underbrush; I would have picked this as a Burgundy. Wonderfully zesty and broad on the palate, with its slightly glyceral texture leavened by terrific energy and lift. In its sulfidey complexity, salty minerality and well-delineated orchard fruit flavors, this is a splendid example of its vineyard and a stellar bottle of California Chardonnay. A very long, lively citrus zest aftertaste leaves the taste buds quivering. This was my favorite wine of the tasting.