Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Gibbs Napa Valley Chardonnay 2015

Gibbs Napa Valley Chardonnay 2015 

A casual weekend night with soup, cheese and crackers and homemade caramel corn in front of a TV movie, this Napa Chardonnay was a perfect casual sipper for the occasion. 

The producer Gibb's family date back to the early 1950's when they were growing walnuts, dates, and a small selection of grapes in Napa Valley. Dr. Lewis Gibbs Carpenter, psychologist, was a lifelong farmer and cattle rancher in Gilroy, bought land on the valley floor and moved his family to Saint Helena. By the 1970s, he had replaced most of the nut and fruit orchards with several Bordeaux varietals of grapes, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc, and Merlot, which were beginning to gain international attention following the 'Judgement of Paris' in 1976.

Gibbs' flagship vineyards include the Cross Creek Vineyard located in the valley created between Howell Mountain and Glass Mountain, on the lower reaches of Howell Mountain overlooking Silverado Trail, stretching from the perennial Howell Creek in the west to the year-round natural springs of Howell Mountain. Their other notable Napa vineyard is Centa Vineyard located at the narrowest point of Napa Valley on Lodi Lane at the Silverado Trail.

Gibbs' wines are featured in the Studio, a new vintner collective tasting room and retail space in downtown Napa.

In 2000, Lewis’ son-in-law, Craig Handly, and his wife Susan began making wine from Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc  estate grown grapes. Over the next decade, Handly honed his skills making private label wines and bottling under the Terroir Napa Valley and Sentall labels. 
When Lewis passed away in 2013, the Gibbs label and brand were introduced, based on the fruit that Lewis had been nurturing for 60 years. Today, Gibbs produces Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Sauvignon Blanc come from those same vineyards planted by Lewis over forty years ago.
Craig and Susan’s son Spencer Gibbs Handly, joined the family business after college in 2014, growing grapes and making wine from family estate vineyards, Spencer had been working the vineyards since a child when Lewis taught him to drive a tractor at the age of five. Today he is active in all aspects of the business.  
Gibbs Napa Valley Chardonnay 2015 

This Gibbs Napa Valley Chardonnay was aged 6 months in 30 - 40% new French oak. 
This is a great value, high QPR wine. 
Straw colored with sprites of light mango color, this is medium bodied, nicely balanced with pear and melon fruits accented by predominate notes of butterscotch caramel, with hints of butter, floral and oak turning to a nice  refreshing clean moderate acidic finish.

RM 91 points.