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Favia Carbone Chardonnay 2019

(Coombsville, Napa Valley, CA) $48

Ironically, a man known for making some of Napa Valley’s best red wines—Andy Erickson, who at various times has made Screaming Eagle, Dalla Valle, Staglin, Ovid, and others—also makes one of the valley’s most exquisite chardonnays. It’s called Carbone, the surname of the Italian immigrant brothers who founded the tiny property that Erickson now farms with his wife Annie Favia, a viticulturist. The chardonnay is explosively delicious with rushes of guava, yellow plum, and vanilla bean flavors, pinpoints of minerals, a vibrating core of crisp acidity and a texture that’s both creamy and silky. And yet for all this exuberance, the wine is both graceful and elegant. (It would be a stupendous treat during the holidays.) For its part, Coombsville, in the cool southeastern corner of Napa Valley, is an ancient crescent-shaped caldera that was formed 5 to 8 million years ago, the result of volcanic explosions.

97 points KM

Available at Vivino.com

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