2009 Chardonnay, Ritchie Vineyard, Russian River Valley

Publication

Vinous

Author

Stephen Tanzer

Date

July 2017

Rating

95

Review

Stunning smoky reduction in a Burgundy way, with the subdued nose showing sexy iodiney minerality as the wine opens in the glass. Intensely flavored, soil-driven wine with a distinctly saline quality to its wonderfully sweet orchard fruit, spice and mineral flavors. Perhaps a bit chunkier than the 2009 Hyde Vineyard bottling but the chewy, salty, rising finish leaves the salivary glands humming. Perfect now after some aeration.

Publication

Robert M. Parker Jr.'s The Wine Advocate

Author

Antonio Galloni

Date

February 1, 2012

Rating

94

Review

The 2009 Chardonnay Ritchie Vineyard shows off a multitude of aromas, flavors and textures. It is a gorgeous, multi-dimensional wine endowed with weightless elegance and definition. Lemon, pastry, white flowers and crushed rocks wrap around the insistent finish. In 2009 the Ritchie is all about subtlety, elegance and finesse. Drink: 2014-2019.

Publication

Wine Spectator

Author

James Laube

Date

April 18 2012

Rating

93

Review

Fresh and vibrant, with a zingy burst of acidity that enlivens the green apple, honeydew melon and subtle lemon tart notes that gain richness and linger. Best from 2013 through 2023.'

Publication

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

Author

Josh Raynolds

Date

May/June 2012

Rating

92

Review

Yellow-gold. Aromas of orange zest, quince and honeysuckle, with subtle spiciness and a touch of anise in the background. Juicy and intensely fruity, with tangy acidity bracing an array of citrus and orchard fruit flavors. The orange and spice notes carry through on the long finish.

Publication

Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine

Date

January 2013

Rating

93

Review

Chardonnay can be rich and, in this particular case, Ramey has come up with an altogether stunning effort that does both with uncanny ease. It is both vital and wonderfully rich in the nose with a complex mix of sweet lemons, perfectly ripe apples, toast and cream and a bare hint of lees, and its deeply drawn flavors are every bit as impressive in terms of both sheer reach and careful proportion. The wine is full and fleshy with lots of seamlessly fit acidity, and its finish is as long as it is downright delicious. As good as it is now, it is certain to age into greater beauty, and it is the rare Chardonnay that comes with a must-age recommendation.