Mixed Case: Sonoma 2015 & 2016

In his article “ Sonoma’s Stellar 2016s ” on Vinous, Antonio Galloni writes, “On the heels of 2015, a year of freakishly low yields that resulted in abnormally intense wines, 2016 marks a return to a much more relaxed, growing season with ideal conditions for making wines endowed with energy, freshness and delineation that provide a striking foil to California’s natural radiance.” He continues, “At three times the size of Napa Valley, Sonoma is a very large, sprawling region encompassing a dizzying array of mountain, hillside and valley floor vineyards that run from the border with Napa all the way to the Pacific Ocean.” Discover the diversity of Sonoma’s wines from Chardonnay to Pinot Noir to Zinfandel and beyond with a mixed case of Galloni’s top picks from the 2015 & 2016 vintages.

Peay Vineyards

Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2016

Delectable Wine
9.2

The 2016 Chardonnay (Sonoma Coast) is pliant, supple and inviting. Orchard fruit, white pepper, smoke, mint and white flowers give the 2016 lovely brightness and nuance. Beautifully delineated and nuanced, with tons of character, the 2016 is a striking and absolutely delicious appellation-level wine. There is so much to like in this classy Chardonnay from Peay. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Anthill Farms

Harmony Lane Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016

Delectable Wine
9.3

Dense and succulent, the 2016 Pinot Noir Harmony Lane has an almost unusual level of concentration by Anthill standards. Succulent black cherry, plum, leather and spice flesh out in this dark, voluptuous Pinot. The 2016 is going to need at least a few years to unwind, but it has terrific potential. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Peirson Meyer

Charles Heintz Vineyard Chardonnay 2015

Delectable Wine
9.3

The 2015 Chardonnay Charles Heintz Vineyard is precise, nuanced and wonderfully detailed. Lemon confit, chamomile, spice and a hint of reduction run through the wine. This is the tightest of the wines, but also preserves terrific freshness, especially for the year. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Littorai

Platt Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015

Delectable Wine
9.6

The 2015 Pinot Noir Platt Vineyard is pliant, supple and beautifully perfumed, with all of the allure it showed from barrel. Plush and dense on the palate, the 2015 is arrestingly beautiful today. The big, potent tannins are nearly buried by the sheer resonance of the fruit. This is an especially dense, virile expression of Platt. I imagine it will develop beautifully in bottle fore many years to come. Littorai's 2015 captures all the pedigree that has made Platt one of the most highly regarded sites on the Sonoma Coast. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Rivers-Marie

Bearwallow Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016

Delectable Wine
9.4

A hugely promising wine, the 2016 Pinot Noir Bearwallow Vineyard is fabulous. Rich, powerful and explosive, with notable fruit density, the Bearwallow is compelling. Inky red and purplish berry fruit and exotic spice notes are front and center. Even with all of its exuberance, the 2016 possesses tremendous structure and depth. Readers will have to be patient, as the Bearwallow does not seem to offer the early appeal of many the other wines in this range. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Carlisle Winery & Vineyards

Carlisle Vineyard Zinfandel 2015

Delectable Wine
9.4

A gorgeous wine, the 2015 Zinfandel Carlisle Vineyard is bright and punchy, with plenty of red cherry, raspberry and floral notes pushed forward. Silky and racy in the glass, this mid-weight Zinfandel is impeccable. The Carlisle is super-finessed in 2015. As usual, the Carlisle is predominantly Zinfandel, with about 12% mixed white and black grapes (a total of 40 varieties), all co-fermented. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Kutch Wines

Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2015

Delectable Wine
9.4

Kutch's 2015 Chardonnay (Sonoma Coast) is a very pretty wine that straddles the line between the more reductive style of the 2014 and lusher expression found in the 2016. Lemon peel, white flowers, chalk, mint and white pepper give the 2015 brightness, aromatic lift and tension. Insistent saline notes punctuate the driving finish. Most of the fruit is from Bohan, although about 10% of the grapes came from Trout Gulch, in the Santa Cruz Mountains. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Bedrock Wine Co.

Monte Rosso Vineyard Zinfandel 2016

Delectable Wine
9.4

The 2016 Zinfandel Monte Rosso Vineyard is utterly sublime. Lifted, aromatically precise and nuanced, the 2016 Zinfandel Monte Rosso Vineyard is fabulous. Rose petal, blood orange, cranberry and raspberry notes give the Monte Rosso striking aromatic presence and brightness. Unfortunately, Bedrock, like all the other wineries that purchased grapes at Monte Rosso, no longer have access to the fruit off this historic ranch. Morgan Peterson and Chris Cottrell certainly chose a strong vintage as their last. The 2016 is sublime. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Arnot-Roberts

Sonoma Coast Syrah 2016

Delectable Wine
9.2

The 2016 Syrah (Sonoma Coast) is dazzling. Inky and dark in its fruit profile, but also light on its feet, the 2016 is all class. Hints of lavender, black pepper, mint and cloves grace the palate in an exquisite, mid-weight Syrah that emphasizes freshness and nuance. Deceptively medium in body, the 2016 has enough underpinnings of structure to drink well for many years. This is a fabulous appellation-level Syrah. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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Occidental (Stephen Kistler)

SWK Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015

Delectable Wine
9.8

A wine that was ethereal and alluring from tank, the 2015 Pinot Noir SWK Vineyard has come together beautifully since I last tasted it. Exotic, thrilling aromatics set the stage for a brilliant, utterly impeccable wine long on class and nuance. Racy and plush, with tremendous flavor intensity and tons of supporting minerality, the 2015 simply has it all. This is another magnificent wine from Steve Kistler and Occidental. (Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2018) — a year ago

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