Au Bon Climat Chardonnay 2016, Santa Barbara
The blend is from four well-farmed vineyards: Bien Nacido, Sierra Madre, Los Alamos and Rancho Vinedo. Au Bon Climat has been making balanced, food friendly Chardonnays since 1982. Even in the early 2000s when ripe, oaky Chardonnays were all the rage, Au Bon Climat stuck to a more subtle and refined style, with minerality and intensity. The 2016 Santa Barbara County Chardonnay is a beautiful example of the Au Bon Climat style. The flinty, stony aromas stand out while in the background is a hard spice note from surlee barrel aging. There are notes of lemon-lime and soft vanilla. With the first taste it is irresistible. This is one of those wines that invites the consumer to have another glass. At this young age, this wine would be perfect with shellfish or poultry. It will improve for at least 10 years and as it evolves, try this wine with Chanterelle mushroom pasta and be amazed.