This is the wine that hooked me on wine nearly 20 years ago. It set the standard for $20 Chardonnay back then, and it says a lot for the consistency of this Sonoma County stalwart winery that its 2009 LANDMARK Overlook Chardonnay still upholds a standard now. A masterful blend of grapes from Sonoma to the Russian River on down to Santa Barbara that stays remarkably consistent no matter what vintage, it’s a gracious wine—round, ebullient, mouthwatering and sweet. It doesn’t try to be anything more than what it is, finding its elegance in the everyday. This is a people’s wine—that is, something that aspires to elevate the experience of ordinary living. What could be sweeter? -J.M.
*Update. The 2011, now in its 20th vintage, remains an American classic. After all this time, the brilliance of winemaking great Helen Turley still shines through. This wine belongs on every table.
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