2010 Rusack Chardonnay Reserve

Year: 2010
Appellation: Santa Maria Valley
Country: USA - California
Wine Spectator: 90
Wine Advocate: 93
Vinous Media: 89
Connoisseurs' Guide: 91
White Wine
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"Tight and intense, with a firm, vibrant, structured mix of tart pineapple and lemon-grapefruit citrus notes. Excellent acidity keeps the flavors fresh and vibrant. Drink now through 2018. 420 cases made." (WS)

"The 2010 Chardonnay Reserve is considerably richer and riper than the Santa Barbara County bottling. Ripe tropical fruit, mango, butter and French oak come to life in this large-scaled, creamy Chardonnay. Here, too, all of the elements are in gorgeous balance. The Reserve is layered, rich, multi-dimensional and flat-out beautiful. It is another striking wine from Rusack. The vineyard sources are 89% Sierra Madre and 11% Bien Nacido. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2016." (WA)

"Vivid gold. Citrus and orchard fruits on the nose, with hints of chamomile and spicecake adding complexity. Nervy and dry, with refreshingly bitter orange and lemon zest flavors and a late note of poached pear. The citrus note repeats on the firm, dry, linear finish. This wine could use a little time to stretch out." (IWC)

"This combination of full ripeness and high acidity will push the limits of most tasters because of its unrelenting acidy involvement, but that trait does not deter us from liking it and its somewhat leaner mate below. Rich and complementary oak with a slightly smoky edge adds its own voice and, together with the lengthy, well-expressed fruit provides a kind of moderating balance to what is one of the more brisk wines in this Issue. Try it now with dishes like Oysters Rockefeller or set it aside in the cellar for some well-deserved maturation. -Reviewed: August 2012" (CG)

Winery Notes:
Long before Chardonnay was widely produced throughout the United States, a small band of vintners from Santa Maria were experimenting with this classic varietal. They discovered that Santa Maria’s long, cool growing season and maritime influ- ences create Chardonnays of greater dimension. Our Reserve reflects these qualities, and is tinged with the scent of Fuji apple, Meyer lemon, and fresh pineapple.

The grapes for our Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay Reserve came from the famous Bien Nacido and Sierra Madre vineyards in the Santa Maria Valley appellation. After being pressed and settled. the juice was barrel fermented in a mixture of new (72%) and older French oak barrels. After primary fermentation was completed, the Chardonnay then went through total malolactic fermentation. Then we stirred the lees over a 4 month period and then let everything settle down for a total of 9 months in barrel. The wine was bottled on July 8, 2011, released September 2011. Only 326 cases were produced.