US-RHY-32-16

Chardonnay 'Horseshoe Vineyard', Rhys Vineyards

– All estate fruit from Horseshoe Vineyard in the Santa Cruz Mountains

– Wente, Hyde and Mt Eden clones

– Monterey shale soils

– 1,450 – 1,500 ft. in elevation on a South facing slope

– Fermented in 20% new oak for about a year until dry, no racking or battonage

– Aged in tank for an additional 4-6 months before bottling

Planted in 2004 with a total of 17.5 acres, Horseshoe Ranch is our most beautiful vineyard site. It is less than 1/2 mile from Alpine vineyard, but they are different in many ways. The ridge between the vineyards protects Horseshoe from some of the direct ocean influence but allows for similarly cool temperatures. More importantly, Horseshoe lies on a ridge of sedimentary shale called Monterey formation that has made its way to surface over the millenia. This lightweight, brittle rust-mottled shale is prevalent throughout the surface and soil providing for low vigor and outstanding drainage.

The wines produced at Horseshoe are uniquely minerally, precise and focused. They offer an almost palpable tension that greatly rewards aging.

Producer:
Vintage:
2016
Country:
United States
Region:
California
Appellation:
Santa Cruz Mountains
Variety:
Chardonnay
Color:
White

Press & Reviews

Parker

Score:
94
Date:
May 2018
Review:
The 2015 Chardonnay Horseshoe Vineyard is more aromatically shy than its Alpine counterpart, unfurling with aeration to reveal a complex nose of crisp green orchard fruit, white flowers, subtle beeswax and oyster shell. On the palate, it's medium-bodied, intense and tightly coiled, with a bright line of acidity and an unmistakable stony, saline quality that defies the taster not to invoke the much-abused term "minerality." Beautifully delineated and pure, this could also go toe to toe with Burgundy's best, but it will demand 4 or 5 years of bottle age before it realizes its full potential.

Vinous Media

Score:
94
Date:
August 2017
Review:
The 2015 Chardonnay Horseshoe Vineyard is precise, tense and brilliant, but with plenty of the phenolic intensity that is typical of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Lemon confit, white flowers, white pepper and mint are some of the signatures. With time in the glass a slightly tropical note starts to develop, but there is an attractive brininess that adds freshness. I would prefer to cellar the 2015 for at least a few years. Even today, though, it is striking.