2022 Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay

Chardonnay - 750ML
Reg: $49.94
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WS 90
WS 90

Wine Spectator, April 2024

Light and juicy, this glides along with a harmonious, fruit-forward mix of juicy green apple, lime sherbet and lemon meringue. Details of ginger, lemongrass and shortbread linger in the background. Drink now. 61,000 cases...


Color & Type White
Varietal Chardonnay
Country USA
Region California
Sub-region North Coast
Appellation Napa
Vintage 2022
Size 750ML
Percent alcohol 13.8%
Closure Cork

Jack and Dolores Cakebread bought their first vineyard in 1972, a 22-acre site. The next year, they founded their Rutherford-based winery, Cakebread Cellars. The winery now holds 1,100 acres spread over 13 sites in Napa Valley and Anderson Valley with about 560 of those acres under vine. Cakebread is still owned and operated by the family.

Cakebread Cellars is best-known for its Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. It also produces Anderson Valley Pinot Noir, Lake County Zinfandel and Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah and Merlot.

The wine styles are flavorful and generally fruit-driven, but still reflective of terroir. New French oak is used moderately and enhances the wine without obscuring natural complexity.

Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay Napa Valley is 100% varietal and comes primarily from the Carneros AVA, the coolest climate of all Napa Valley AVAs. With temperatures moderated by the San Pablo Bay but very low rainfall, Chardonnay is able to attain good ripeness while maintaining excellent acidity.

Cakebread’s Cellars Chardonnay is fermented primarily in French oak barrels, but not all new. To preserve crispness, only a portion of the wine undergoes malolactic fermentation.

In the world of Chardonnay, there are few names as revered as Cakebread Cellars. With their attention to detail and commitment to producing exceptional wines, it's no wonder that their 2022 Chardonnay is a true standout. From the moment you set eyes on this wine, you'll be captivated by its golden hue, reflecting the warm California sunshine that kissed the grapes as they ripened.

On the nose, the 2022 Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay offers an intoxicating bouquet of ripe tropical fruits, including pineapple and mango, layered with hints of vanilla and buttery toast. Swirling the glass releases even more complex aromas, with notes of lemon zest and roasted hazelnuts emerging gracefully.

As you take your first sip, the wine envelops your palate with a rich and luscious texture that is balanced by a refreshing acidity. The flavors of ripe pear and apple are complemented by a touch of toasted oak, adding depth and complexity to the wine. The finish is long and memorable, leaving a lingering impression of citrus and a touch of vanilla.

This Chardonnay showcases the best of California's North Coast region, with its cool climate and diverse soils. The grapes were carefully handpicked and gently pressed to preserve their natural freshness and vibrant flavors. The wine was then aged in French oak barrels, imparting subtle nuances and a creamy texture.

Whether enjoyed on its own or paired with a gourmet seafood dish, the 2022 Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay is sure to impress even the most discerning wine lover. This is a wine that embodies elegance, sophistication, and the true essence of California winemaking.