One of the great winemakers in California, David Ramey is the owner/winemaker of Ramey, producer of some of the best Chardonnay on this planet. The winery sources from some of the great vineyards in Sonoma, including the Hue and Ritche Vineyards. His style of Chardonnay is one that exemplifies balance and poise, regardless of vintage. His single vineyard Chardonnays in particular show incredible terroir, richness, range and poise that put them in the upper echelon of California Chardonnay.
The new release wines were highly impressive across the board. I absolutely loved the 2015 Ramey ‘Ritchie Vineyard’ Chardonnay (WWB, 93) which showed wonderful range and a silky texture. This great wine has potential to cellar well for a decade or more. Even better and more memorable, was the 2015 Ramey ‘Hyde Vineyard’ Chardonnay (WWB, 94) which is one of the best Chardonnay wines that I have reviewed in the past year. The precision and balance of this wine is simply impeccable. Ramey also produces a stunning Syrah bottling and his 2016 Ramey ‘Sonoma Coast’ Syrah (WWB, 93) shows marvelous terroir from this warmer vintage in Sonoma County. Learn more about these gorgeous wines at http://www.rameywine.com Here are the great new releases by Ramey and the talented David Ramey.
2015 Ramey ‘Russian River Valley’ Chardonnay- This fantastic new Chardonnay was aged for 12 months in 21% new French oak barrels (François Frères, Taransaud, & Vicard) prior to bottling. The wine shows an aromatic display of brioche, lemon zest and ripe pineapple on the nose. The palate reveals a wonderfully rich texture and a great sense of minerality. With a soft mouthfeel, the wine unveils banana, roasted pineapple and vanilla creme brûlée flavors that entice. Bright and rich, this is a complete wine that will continue to evolve over the next decade. Drink 2018-2028- 92
2015 Ramey ‘Ritchie Vineyard’ Chardonnay- The Ritchie Vineyard is a famed site located in the Russian River Valley. Chardonnay vines here were first planted in 1972. The wine was aged for 20 months in 21% new French oak barrels (François Frères and Taransaud Beaune) prior to bottling. Showing really good range on the nose, the bouquet ranges from heavy whipping cream to ripe pear and apricot aromas. The palate reveals a silky texture and a ripe texture that coats the tongue. Bananas foster, vanilla cream, Meyer lemon zest and ripe pineapple flavors all nicely combine in the glass. Complex and rich, with mouth-watering acidity, this is a stunning effort that will cellar well for a decade or more. Drink 2018-2028- 93
2015 Ramey ‘Hyde Vineyard’ Chardonnay- The 2015 Ramey ‘Hyde VIneyard’ Chardonnay is a simply gorgeous new wine that is one of the best of its kind by superstar winemaker, David Ramey. Set on clay loam the marine influenced Hyde Vineyard has gained an international reputation for producing outstanding Chardonnay grapes. This Carneros bottling shows nutmeg, vanilla creme brulee, macadamia nut and heavy whipping cream flavors that impress. Lithe and rich, this gorgeous bottling will cellar well for the next ten to fifteen years. Drink 2018-2033- 94
2016 Ramey ‘Russian River Valley’ Pinot Noir- The 2016 Ramey ‘Russian River Valley’ Pinot Noir was aged for 14 months in 49% new French barrels (François Frères & Demptos) prior to bottling. The wine was sourced from largely the De La Montanya, as well as Bucher Vineyard (Tory Block) and the Bucher Vineyard (North L Block). This shows beautiful range on the nose from orange zest to cran-pomegranate and raspberry cordial. The palate reveals a silky texture as medium bodied red fruits and citrus rind with wild mushroom flavors all collide. Beautifully balanced and showing great earthy terroir, this great wine is best enjoyed over the next decade. Drink 2018-2028- 92
2016 Ramey ‘Sonoma Coast’ Syrah-It is no surprise that the Sonoma Coast AVA is growing in prominence with great Syrah bottling and the 2015 Ramey ‘Sonoma Coast’ Syrah is another outstanding effort from this exciting appellation. The nose shows really good range with lighter citrus, black fruit and earthy tones with black olive tapenade and smoked brisket. The palate is plush and shows good freshness, with a saline streak. Black tea, anise, blackberry cobbler and smoked Kalmata olive flavors all come together marvelously once in the mouth. A delight to savor, this terror driven effort will cellar well for the next decade. Drink 2018-2028- 93
2014 Ramey ‘Napa Valley’ Cabernet Sauvignon- David Ramey has gained serious acclaim with his Cabernet bottling and the latest effort is another outstanding effort. There is a wonderful sense of earthy terroir on the nose with leather, green bell pepper, pipe tobacco and copious dark fruits the fill the nose. The mouthfeel is plush, revealing a wonderful decadence. Black cherry compote, blackberry cobbler, mocha and red bell pepper puree flavors all nicely mingle together. A seriously good effort, enjoy this great Cabernet over the next ten to fifteen years. Drink 2018-2033- 92