The mellow scent of vanilla tells you right away that the 2016 Jarman Chardonnay from Holman Ranch spent some time in oak – four months in barrels of spanking new French wood, in this case. And with crisp pear, ripe apricot and a hint of warm spice also alerting the nose, you have every reason to anticipate a rich, buttery wine.
But winemakers Greg and Chris Vita are crafty. Blushing red apple and bracing lemon with plenty of zest give the wine a brisk, unbridled character. The fruits zing across the palate and linger momentarily on the finish before racing away, leaving a pinch of lemon zest behind. Yet at the same time, there’s a calm undertone – supple vanilla and toasted spice dwell behind the fruit. And there’s an almost floral, tropical hint that lends some weight to the cheerful citrus.
It’s a wine you want in your cellar (or that little wine fridge you refer to as your cellar). As an added bonus, some of the proceeds from all Jarman label wines support work on Alzheimer’s. So, yeah – sip and feel good about it.
HOLMAN RANCH, Seventh between Dolores and San Carlos, Carmel. 601-8761, holmanranch.com