California Chardonnay continues to be dogged by the stereotype that it is all rich, buttery, and oaky, however, this is a long way from that, as so astutely proven by the Jack's Hill Chardonnay. This has far more in common with a good Chablis - lemon and lime curd and fresh lemon peel, mineral-tinged and with the merest hint of gently toasty oak. Very precise and focussed, and such zip! The mid palate is a little softer, with golden skinned plums, dried pear, orange peel and blanched almonds. The finish is brisk, lightly salty and very long.
Ian Brand was San Francisco Chronicle's Winemaker of the Year 2018. His journey into wine is far from ordinary- after years living somewhat a nomadic lifestyle of adventure, he got a job doing maintenance at iconic Santa Cruz winery, Bonny Doon, which soon led to a job in the cellar, where he spent several happy years working under Randall Grahm. In 2002, he took up the role of assistant winemaker at relatively new Monterey County estate, Big Basin, where he fell in love with the extraordinary Monterey County terroir, its dramatic microclimates generated through the combination of Californian sunshine, sea breezes and fog, and the amazing and little-known vineyards and their soils. P'tit Paysan wines was launched in 2008, its name a slightly ironic self-reference to Monterey's status as a nowhere place in comparison with many grander grape-growing locations in California.
FROM THE PRESS
“It’s hard to name a better value California bottle right now than Ian's Le P’tit Paysan Chardonnay.”Esther Mobley, San Francisco Chronicle