Golden straw-colored in the glass, the wine opens with cinnamon and ripe peach, bolstered by aromas of melon, fig, and pear. More fruity than floral upon release, there’s nonetheless plenty of honeysuckle and spice, softening to green apple and vanilla. Initially fused with lemon curd and ripe orange, there’s dynamic tension transitioning to the midpalate between the suppleness of summer stonefruit and the austere acid beneath. The citrus lingers as well, amidst a billowy texture that bolsters the bare minerality, contrasted only by the whisper-soft hint of fresh baked bread. Bright and fresh, ripe apricot along with orange marmalade lend a slight sweetness peppered by toasted almond and clove. - Winemaker Notes
92 points - Vinous
"Chateau Montelena's 2018 Chardonnay is bright and finely sculpted, with terrific energy driving the citrus and floral flavors. Blocking malolactic fermentation keeps the flavors brisk. This cool site in Oak Knoll suits the Montelena style very nicely. Readers who enjoy focused Chardonnays will find plenty to like. This is an especially fine vintage for the Montelena Chardonnay."