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Ridge Chardonnay Home Ranch 2005

Member Review by Eric Guido:

This was my last bottle of this wine and it was quite a send off. The nose opened up showing lemon peel, baked peaches, buttered toast and rain on concrete. It was enjoyable to simply sit and inhale the aromas of this beautiful wine. The palate was rich and smooth with citrus, peach snapps, butter and minerals. It had a great concentration yet remained fresh and lively and left you with a burnt sugar finish that went on for over a minute. There is a certain sweetness to this Chardonnay but it is gorgeous.

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Winery: Ridge Vineyards
Color: White
Varietal: Chardonnay
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Ridge Vineyards:
The history of Ridge Vineyards begins in 1885, when Osea Perrone (third person on bench wearing tall boots), a doctor who became a prominent member of San Francisco's Italian community, bought 180 acres near the top of Monte Bello Ridge. He terraced the slopes and planted vineyards; using native limestone, he constructed the Monte Bello Winery, producing the first vintage under that name... Read more
The history of Ridge Vineyards begins in 1885, when Osea Perrone (third person on bench wearing tall boots), a doctor who became a prominent member of San Francisco's Italian community, bought 180 acres near the top of Monte Bello Ridge. He terraced the slopes and planted vineyards; using native limestone, he constructed the Monte Bello Winery, producing the first vintage under that name in 1892. This unique cellar, built into the mountainside on three levels, is Ridge's production facility. At 2600', it is surrounded by the "upper vineyard." In the 1940s, William Short, a theologian, bought the abandoned winery and vineyard just below the Perrone property; he replanted several parcels to cabernet sauvignon in the late 1940s. From these vines — now the "middle vineyard"— new owners Dave Bennion and his three partners, all Stanford Research Institute engineers, made a quarter-barrel of "estate" cabernet. That Monte Bello Cabernet was among California's finest wines of the era. Its quality and distinctive character, and the wines produced from these same vines in 1960 and '61, convinced the partners to re-bond the winery in time for the 1962 vintage. The first zinfandel was made in 1964, from a small nineteenth-century vineyard farther down the ridge. This was followed in 1966 by the first Geyserville zinfandel. The founding families reclaimed the Monte Bello terraces, increasing vineyard size from fifteen to forty-five acres. Working on weekends, they made wines of regional character and unprecedented intensity. By 1968, production had increased to just under three thousand cases per year, and in 1969, Paul Draper joined the partnership. A Stanford graduate in philosophy—recently returned from setting up a winery in Chile's coast range—he was a practical winemaker, not an enologist. His knowledge of fine wines and traditional methods complemented the straightforward "hands off" approach pioneered at Ridge. Under his guidance the old Perrone winery (acquired the previous year) was restored, the finest vineyard lands leased or purchased, the consistent quality and international reputation of the wines established. Cabernet and zinfandel account for most of the production; syrah, grenache, carignane, and petite sirah constitute a small percentage. Known primarily for its red wines, Ridge has also made limited amounts of chardonnay since 1962. Lytton Springs, in Sonoma County, became part of the Ridge estate in 1991. A quarter century's experience with this vineyard had convinced us that it was an exceptional piece of ground. Forty consecutive vintages of Geyserville attest to yet another stunning combination of location and varietals. Though born in the early sixties to the post-Prohibition world of modern California winemaking, Ridge relies on nature and tradition rather than technology. Our approach is straightforward: find intense, flavorful grapes; intrude upon the process only when necessary; draw the fruit's distinctive character and richness into the wine. Read less

Member Reviews for Ridge Chardonnay Home Ranch

Add your review
Snooth User: Eric Guido
92549180,364
3.50 5
10/16/2010

This was my last bottle of this wine and it was quite a send off. The nose opened up showing lemon peel, baked peaches, buttered toast and rain on concrete. It was enjoyable to simply sit and inhale the aromas of this beautiful wine. The palate was rich and smooth with citrus, peach snapps, butter and minerals. It had a great concentration yet remained fresh and lively and left you with a burnt sugar finish that went on for over a minute. There is a certain sweetness to this Chardonnay but it is gorgeous.


Snooth User: Eric Guido
92549180,364
4.00 5
11/15/2008

Brillant gold in color. When first open the nose is stone and a bit funky but quickly turnes to melon, banana and fresh strawberries with a hint of honeysuckle and white flowers. As the wine sits in the glass scents of almond and oak come to the surface. The bottles high alcohol shows a bit with each sniff. Full bodied and smooth with apple and pear that leads to a lime finish that last for a full minute. I'm so sad this wine won so many accolades because I'd love to be able to buy more of it


Snooth User: WineGent
81275201
5.00 5
07/30/2008

It pours a golden yellow and is intensely aromatic. Perfume of white flowers, honeysuckle, quince and pear get your attention immediately. As you swirl, the fruit comes forward with pineapple and melon....beautiful nose. The wine is full and lush in the mouth. Great Pear and fig flavors on the front with toast and mineral rounding out a buttery finish. Brioche toast is a great description. This wine has an incredibly long finish. It is reminiscent of a mature French Montrachet. Incredible. Unlike many American Chardonnay, this one will age. You can be comfortable laying some of this down to evolve, although I cannot imagine you will want to. It is too delicious now.


Snooth User: Fred B
14458514
5.00 5
03/01/2009

Five glasses


External Reviews for Ridge Chardonnay Home Ranch

External Review
Source: Premium Wine & Spirits
05/19/2011

Combines richness with an elegant, delicate mouthfeel, showing deep layers of ripe fig and green pear, honeydew melon and smoky oak. Balanced, focused, pure and lingering. Drink now through 2013.


External Review
Source: Premium Wine & Spirits
05/19/2011

Great balance, depth, elegance and finesse. Shows lots of spicy, toasty, smoky oak, but also plenty of rich, vibrant, smooth and concentrated pear, fig and melon flavors before returning to the toasty oak. Drink now through 2011.



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