The 2016 Chardonnay Sanford & Benedict Vineyard - 31st Vintage is a bottling from the second of the two picks Jim Clendenen did at S&B. Bright, fresh and translucent, the 2016 is remarkably refined for such a rich wine. Orchard fruit, citrus and floral notes take on uncanny shades of dimension in this positively stunning Chardonnay from Au Bon Climat.
In 1989 and 1990 Au Bon Climat was on Robert Parker's short list of Best Wineries in the World, and in 1991 was selected by Oz Clark as one of fifty world-wide creators of Modern Classic Wines. Dan Berger of the Los Angeles Times named Clendenen the "Los Angeles Time Winemaker of the Year" in 1992; Food & Wine magazine named him "Winemaker of the Year" in 2001. Germany's leading wine magazine, Wein Gourmet, in 2004 name Clendenen “Winemaker of the World;” and in 2007, Jim was inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s “Who’s Who of Food and Beverage in America.” Accolades abound but Jim does not rest on his laurels. He is continually looking to fine tune his craft and consequently leads the pack. Articulate, knowlegeable, well traveled, passionate, and uncensored with a biting humor, Jim Clendenen is an icon that wine cognoscenti gravitate to.