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2014 The Hilt Vanguard Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County, USA

$59.99 USD

Showing a touch of brioche in its ripe orchard fruits, toasted bread, sweet peach and white flower bouquet, the 2014 Chardonnay Vanguard is medium-bodied, fresh, layered and focused, with lively acidity and a pure, elegant style. Give bottles a year in the cellar and enjoy over the following 5-7 years.

94 Points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

The 2014 Chardonnay Vanguard offers good up-front intensity, but, it, too remains very tightly wound and in need of time in bottle. There is good purity to the orchard fruit and lemon confit flavors, while picking early has preserved a considerable amount of freshness. At this stage, the Vanguard is not really all that different from the Santa Barbara County bottling. It will be interesting to see how those two wines develop. Vineyard sources are Sanford & Benedict, Solomon Hills and Radian. Today, though, the Vanguard is not particularly expressive.

92 Points Vinous