Double Gold Medal, Mendocino County Fair Gold Medal, 92 Points, Orange County Fair
Our 2018 Viognier was sourced from the Nelson Vineyard in Mendocino County. The Nelson family has been farming their ranch for over 65 years using sustainable practices. The ranch sits along the Russian River and benefits from warm days and cool, foggy nights to produce ripened fruit with balanced acidity.
A bouquet of clean citrus and honeysuckle greet you in the glass. A smooth and supple mouthfeel with flavors of juicy mandarin orange, stone fruit and pineapple lead to a finish that boasts a bright acidity. This is a Hawley flagship varietal and a perfectly enjoyable glass of wine!
Hawley Winery and Vineyards is located near Healdsburg, overlooking the Dry Creek Valley. John Hawley started the winery in 1996, after 20 years of winemaking at some of California’s most influential wineries: Clos Du Bois and Kendall Jackson. Today, John and his two sons, Paul and Austin Hawley, produce unique wines from their certified organic vineyards and select Sonoma County grapes.
We craft nine different wines at Hawley Winery, although more than half of them are less than 500 cases. Producing only 3,000 cases annually, we enjoy the freedom of our small family winery to make a variety of wines and styles. Making wines in small lots from select vineyards allows us to capture the character of a vineyard and a vintage, the terroir. We enjoy crafting small lots of unique wines that express our Sonoma County vineyards.
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Quick note, we’ve been very hot here, and my cork didn’t come out of the bottle right. The wine didn’t taste “corked,” but there were some characteristics I wasn’t expecting from this varietal. Served at 55 degrees from the wine fridge. It’s a nice yellow in the glass, but not much of a nose. It smelled more acidy than anything. The first sip is hot, alcohol, acid and minerality. No floral or fruit. I tried to let it sit out for a bit, but it’s too astringent for me. I’ll try it again tomorrow to see if it mellows at all. I normally like a bright acidic wine, but this was a lot. I hope another rat had a different experience and my bottle just didn’t tolerate the transport in the heat.
Tried it again this afternoon, i think the bottle didn’t take the heat well. There’s maybe a bit less astringency, but I’m still not getting any floral/fruit notes. I’m sure that previous years rattage paints a more accurate picture of what you will receive.
I do like Viognier, especially going into Summer and price is certainly attractive. But Viognier styles can vary quite a bit and I’m more accustomed to Oregon versions.
Hoping for some updated rattage and winemaker participation.
The last two Hawley Viognier I had tried (2016 Sierra Foothills and 2017 Mendocino from here, of which I’m still hoarding two bottles) were excellent - tempted to pull the trigger but I’ll wait until another rat checks in. As I’m fairly close (geographically) to Wine Country Connection, the delivery is only a day or two and it’s forecast to cool off in the next couple weeks, so not too worried about the weather toasting it during shipping …
“A bouquet of clean citrus and honeysuckle greet you in the glass. A smooth and supple mouthfeel with flavors of juicy mandarin orange, stone fruit and green apple lead to a finish that boasts a bright acidity. This is a Hawley flagship varietal and a perfectly enjoyable glass of wine!“ (AbV 14.2%)
(2018) TASTING NOTES
“A bouquet of clean citrus and honeysuckle greet you in the glass. A smooth and supple mouthfeel with flavors of juicy mandarin orange, stone fruit and pineapple lead to a finish that boasts a bright acidity.” (AbV 14.2%)