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Community Tasting Notes (6) Avg Score: 92 points

  • 13.8% alcohol. A fuller bodied and fuller throttled chardonnay expression, but with an invigorating backbone of acidity that both provides a nice counterpoint to the richer, riper fruit profile and gives the wine a real sense of focus, contour, energy, and balance. In terms of aromas and flavors, The Tributary offers up notions of honeycomb/beeswax, yellow/golden fruits, jasmine, lilac, roasted nuts, and a deft suggestion of lees/creamy oak/barrel spice. Long, driving finish. A marked improvement and superior showing compared with my last go round with this wine in April, 2013. Outstanding.

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  • Popped and poured. Light gold. Fragrant nose of citrus and tropical fruits with a touch of butterscotch. Lovely balance on the palate; initially this is quite tight but then opens with air and the rich fruit shows, although still with balancing acidity and a bit of oak. I think this may improve further 2-3 years.

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  • 13.8% alcohol, only 66 cases produced. This shows more weight, density, and viscosity than I typically associate with this producer with aromas and flavors of roasted nuts, honeycomb/beeswax, white flowers, lemon curd, white peach, quince, and a subtle earthy suggestion. Actually more expressive, complex, and complete in the mouth than on the nose. There is a nice swath of acidity on the attack that helps to buffer all of that richness, although this wine doesn't quite offer the precision, energy, or freshness of the best examples of Littorai chardonnay (for me to date, those would be the 2004 Tributary and 2005 & 2008 Charles Heintz). My first of three bottles, will plan opening another and reassessing its development and trajectory within the next 12-18 months.

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  • First impression, on the nose and in the mouth, is smoky oak, and a creamy, leesy character- perhaps suggesting that additional integration time is needed. Texturally speaking, this wine is a mouthful of sticky, viscous chardonnay fruit, which seems to be a departure from the rest of the Littorai '07 chards, in terms of mouthfeel. Underneath the oak lies a bevy of exotic fruits and honeyed jasmine, all buoyed by a sufficient, but surprisingly reserved acidity; which from a chemistry standpoint might be at a target number, but is overwhelmed by the sheer intensity of the other components of the wine. Wins points for unrestrained hedonism, but might need a short spell in the cellar to settle down and integrate.

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  • Sweet, modern styled chard. Enough acidity to make it enjoyable - reasonably balanced in fact. Pretty well done for this style, but not the restrained style that Lottorai seems to pretend to.

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  • By Stephen Tanzer
    May/June 2009, IWC Issue #144, (See more on Vinous...)

    (Littorai Chardonnay The Tributary Vineyard Sonoma Coast) Subscribe to see review text.

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