April Showers Bring May Flowers
…And by flowers, we mean Sonoma’s Flowers Vineyard and Winery, whose Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs consistently receive big kudos from Robert Parker and other critics. We love this winery and think you will, too.
Flowers’ vineyards grow in crazy good conditions in Sonoma, both on the estate’s gorgeous ridges and on additional land tended by the winery’s team. Chef Peter is a passionate wine fan and a frequent visitor to Sonoma and Napa, and he loves the story of Flowers’ beginning.
Founders Walt and Joan Flowers built and ran a successful commercial nursery in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and they just happened to have the perfect name to be in the business of growing stuff! But in 1989, they traded in the mid-Atlantic for California, answering an ad in a national wine magazine. They fulfilled a lifelong dream of using their agricultural knowledge to make wine, buying 382 acres in what’s known as Sonoma’s “extreme” coast, a remote area with ridges reaching 1,400 to 1,800 feet in elevation. Situated above the fog line and overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the area’s sharp temperature swings and arid conditions help get the most out of the two varietals the couple grows and produces Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
The 2016 vintages of both wines are excellent. The Chardonnay opens with notes of lemon curd, honeydew and star fruit and is balanced by wet stone and white pepper. Nice tannins and a crisp finish make it a superb match with our Fish Katie, redfish topped with jumbo lump crabmeat, Creole meunière and Hollandaise, or anything else that tickles your fancy.
And for you red lovers, the Flowers 2016 Pinot Noir, beautifully layered and aged in French oak, will not disappoint. Look for notes of cherry and peach pith. Generous tannins, bright acidity and a long, smooth finish make it sing with our classic veal parmesan and our steakhouse hamburger, made from ground brisket, short ribs and tenderloin and topped with our house-made Benton’s bacon jam.