Tasting note to follow...
The 2017 Roussanne Estate is quite delicate in this vintage. In 2017, the Estate has 12% Chardonnay, which adds complexity and nuance, while also pushing some of the Roussanne character into the background. Even so, it is a very pretty wine. Drink it over the next few years.
97 Points - Stuart McCloskey
The 2015 L’Avion (90% Roussanne 10% Chardonnay) is substantial, unctuous and as I have previously commented, I would love to place this alongside Château Beaucastel Roussanne Vieilles Vignes & Sine Qua Non in a blind tasting. Wine destined for L’Avion must go through three cuts. First, only the two older blocks of Roussanne are eligible for L’Avion followed by the best, evenly “Rousse” or sun-tanned clusters which are selected. Finally, only their favourite barrels for L’Avion make it to bottling on the label, which translates to a tiny production of a mere 500 cases. The result being a mesmerising kaleidoscope of honeysuckle, acacia flower, tangerine peel all supported by a fine thread of minerals and piquant acidity. It is simply amazing that a wine of this full-bodied richness can retain perfect definition and refinement. Needless to say, this is a stunning wine and a rare glimpse of something very, very special at this price level.
Jeb Dunnuck (RobertParker.com)
What's becoming the flagship Syrah for the estate, the 2013 Syrah Originals Estate comes from the original planting of the estate from 1992. It offers more texture, depth, richness and elegance over the Estate Syrah and possesses beautiful notes of creme de cassis, barbecue smoke, crushed pepper and violets. Medium to full-bodied, ripe and textured, yet always pure and balanced, it will have a decade of longevity.
97 Points - Stuart McCloskey "By far, the standout wine from the Talbott samples which I received. The nose unfolds with some aeration but retains its tight, mineral and steely fresh character – a nutty character unfolds after a while. The palate offers a degree of richness but has a tight and elegant core which is most attractive. Buttered citrus, stone fruits and tropical layers in abundance with touches of toast and oak. The mouthfeel and textural grip are impressive which support the wine’s overall harmonious balance. Lovely acidity and vitality which contrasts beautifully with the ripe fruit and toasty, mealy flavours. This is just beginning to show its full potential and will comfortably cellar for 5+ years. Excellent and served using Zalto Bordeaux glassware."
92 Points – Antonio Galloni "The 2014 Chardonnay Holly's Cuvée is a blend of the three Chardonnays made under the Varner label. Candied lemon peel, orange, mint and honeyed notes give the Holly's its rich, luscious personality. Drink this open-knit, generous Chardonnay over the next handful of years. The 2014 is a blend of 75% Bee Block, 20% Amphitheater Block and 5% Block."
95 Points - Antonio Galloni
Varner's Chardonnay Amphitheater Block is rich, ample and super-expressive. Lemon peel, almonds, chamomile, earthiness, dried apricot and sage meld together effortlessly. The 2013 Amphitheater is a classic Varner Chardonnay built on phenolic intensity and plenty of savory/floral notes that add nuance, while the fruit is pushed a bit into the background.
93 Points - Antonio Galloni
The 2014 Chardonnay Amphitheater Block wraps around the palate with striking depth. Creamy, ample and expressive, the Amphitheater is all about texture. Orange peel, mint, graphite, candied lemon and sweet floral notes abound in this deeply nuanced Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay. There is a lot to like here.
95 Points - Wine Enthusiast
Crafted from 12 different clones planted throughout the estate vineyard, farmed to perfection, this is a delicious and exuberant expression of blueberry crumble that's succulent and inviting in every way. Full bodied, it retains enough acidity to remain mouthwatering and yet complex, a subtlety of white pepper and cardamom biting at the its heels.