Jasper’s Pick of the Week: Rombauer Chardonnay

by Jasper Russo

Rombauer Chardonnay Carneros 2011. $39.99

One of the most popular Chardonnays on the market is Kerner Rombauer’s Carneros bottling. Popularly styled, well balanced and remarkably consistent from year to year, this wine is a stalwart of restaurant wine lists and retail shelves. However when supplies run short at the end of the vintage wine list placements are protected at the expense of retailers, which has made Rombauer Chardonnay impossible to find recently. 

The good news is that the newly released 2011 vintage hit Dallas last week. The bad news is that production levels are down about 40% so retail supplies will once again become scarce, probably around Christmas. If this is one of your favorites you may want to stock up now for the holidays.

Light gold color. Subtle nose of talc, Golden Delicious apple, pear, honeysuckle and sandalwood. On the palate the attack is bright and fresh, featuring vanilla custard flavors with citrus and apricot notes. Medium bodied with a stony minerality making the wine more complex. Showing more verve and less fat on the finish than previous releases, reflecting the cool temperatures that characterize this vintage.

Recently released by the winery this will undoubtedly gain weight and richness as it matures.


Jasper Russo who has spent over 30 years as a wine professional in Dallas in all facets of the business including restaurant, retail, wholesale and importing and is a respected wine competition judge. Jasper writes the independent wine blog Mad Palate Skills and has been the Wine Buyer for Sigel’s Fine Wine and Spirits  for the last 10 years.


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