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Au Bon Climat Bien Nacido Vineyard Chardonnay 2016

Au Bon Climat Bien Nacido Vineyard Chardonnay 2016

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"The 2016 Chardonnay Bien Nacido Vineyard is bright, focused and wonderfully nuanced. This is such a fabulous expression of Bien Nacido. Lemon confit, white flowers, mint and white pepper are all beautifully delineated in a striking, translucent Chardonnay that is in a great spot for current drinking. Bright saline notes add energy throughout. This is such a classy wine. Drinking window: 2019-2026. 94 points

Every wine I tasted from Jim Clendenen was brilliant. Once regarded as the poster child for a more restrained style, Clendenen inspired many of today’s leading young producers. Ironically, most of them now make wines that are quite focused and bright, which makes Clendenen’s wines seem opulent by comparison. How times change. To me though, these remain super-classic Santa Barbara wines. Most of the top selections see 100% new oak, although Clendenen uses slightly larger barrels these days, but they have the pedigree and richness to handle the wood. My only real quibble with Au Bon Climate and Clendenden Family is the insistence on using super-heavy bottles, which create an unnecessarily large carbon footprint. Jim Clendenen is one of the old-timers in Santa Barbara, but he’s still got plenty of game."

Antonio Galloni, Vinous (09/19)