The winemaking team of Burgundy star Jean-Nicolas Méo and Washington state native Tracy Kendall, recruited from Oregon icon Adelsheim Vineyards by Jay Boberg to help launch Nicolas-Jay, pulls from several of the Willamette Valley’s top sites for a Chardonnay crafted in a charming reserve style not seen as often in the Northwest. Their work beautifully blends nuances of a baker’s kitchen that are tucked deliciously behind orchard fruit across a citrusy framework, keeping the focus on the collection from stately Elton (Eola-Amity Hills), historic Maresh (Dundee Hills), youthful L’Angolo (Dundee Hills) and Nicola-Jay’s own Bishop Creek (Yamhill-Carlton). There’s an early aromatic greeting of toast from the 20% new French oak, which is joined by lemon, apple butter, marzipan and ground cinnamon. The drink is rich yet not ponderous as Asian pear, pineapple and lemony flavors fill the palate, which also offers subtle notes of butterscotch and toffee while skillfully maintaining balance.
Rating: Outstanding! — 92 points
Production: 440 cases