Monday, June 5, 2023

Dry Creek Vineyard 2021 DCV Block 10 Chardonnay, Russian River Valley

You may not be familiar with Dry Creek Vineyard Chardonnay. If that’s the case, here’s what you’re missing.

Dry Creek Vineyard championed Loire Valley-style wines in Sonoma’s Dry Creek Valley. Their excellence, however, extends to Chardonnay. A prime example is the latest release of the DCV Block 10 Chardonnay.

All 185 acres of estate vineyards are certified sustainable. DCV Block 10 in Russian River Valley has an ideal microclimate for growing Chardonnay. The moderate temperature and fog from the Pacific Ocean keep the grapes protected from the harsh sun and allow the grapes to ripen evenly and slowly. The DCV Block 10 Chardonnay is crafted from just 30 rows in the northeast corner of the vineyard.

One thing  I have always appreciated about Dry Creek Vineyard is its judicious use of oak aging. They don’t cover up the flavors of the wine with excess oak. That is the case here.

The wine is 88% barrel fermented with the remainder fermenting in stainless steel. The wine undergoes malolactic fermentation for the most part (88%). Barrel aging is in French oak, 26% new.

On the nose, there is an immediate rush of tropical notes, including pineapple and some peach. On the palate, there is pear and mango mixed with some light oak. The oak contributes spicy notes without overwhelming the bright and harmonious flavors. This is a perfect Chardonnay for me, light enough to enjoy on its own or pair with a meal without bogging down with oaky, buttery notes.

This is drinking well now and can age for up to three years. This is a beautiful dinner companion or a wine for weekend entertaining. SRP is $45.

Full disclosure: This wine was received as a marketing sample.

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