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2018 Chalk Hill Estate Red

Chalk Hill’s location, between the cool Russian River appellation, and the warm Alexander Valley, places it in an ideal location. The diversity of the Chalk Hill creates a broad spectrum of different sites planted to red and white varieties. They have always been known for their flashy Chardonnays and Sauvignon Blanc. The lower, cooler sites are well designed for Chardonnay while the steeper, warmer, south-facing slopes are suited to ripen Bordeaux varietals.

Attorney Fred Furth, born in Harvey, Illinois was piloting his plane over the Russian River Valley when he viewed a natural amphitheater carved into the hills of eastern Sonoma. In 1972, he purchased the undeveloped plot of land within Russian River Valley. By 2010, Bill Foley and his wife Carol had purchased the 1,300-acre estate. The vineyards feature a range of microclimates, soils and exposures.

This is a selection of the best red varietals from the estate. It is composed of 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Malbec, 10% Petit Verdot and 2% Carmenere aged for 21 months in French Oak. . The wine had a deep opaque color with shades of purple. The subtle aromas of spring flowers and savory spices lead to warm plums, anise, dark currant preserves. With some aeration, softer shades of fruits appear. Elements of saddle leather, pipe tobacco and chalky minerality emerge in the background. The finish is well balanced and nicely polished to a smooth edge.

By W Peter Hoyne

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