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Monterey County, California is a premier wine producing region in the state, but all too often, it seems to slip under the radar of wine lovers everywhere. So if you’ve never enjoyed a bottle from the area, it’s high time you did. Here are a handful of whites that pleased our tasting panel’s palates:

Wagon Wheel White Front

Galante Vineyards 2013 “Wagon Wheel” White

Grape(s): 92 % Sauvignon Blanc & 8% Viognier

Region: Monterey County

Price: 20-25

Tasting Notes:

Aromas of nectarine, pear, and apricot mingle with hints of minerals and white blossoms on the nose. On the palate, flavors of apricot, peach, and mango emerge, along with accents of minerals. A crisp wine that still offers supple flavors, fans of out of the ordinary white blends should try this bottle. 302 cases produced.

Rating: 91

SO1080014-2_p1_VV_13Chardonnayft

Ventana 2013 Chardonnay

Grape(s): 100% Chardonnay

Region: Monterey County, Ca

Price: 20-25

Tasting Notes:

A bouquet of pineapple, pear, sweet spice and vanilla rises up from a glass. Flavors of tart apple, pear, and passion fruit interweave with nuances of caramel and spicy oak on the palate. A balanced acidity and supple mouthfeel, make it a wine to please a crowd.

Rating: 89

Dawn's Dream Chardonnay Label

Dawn’s Dream 2012 Chardonnay

Grape(s): 100% Chardonnay

Region: Monterey County, Ca

Price: 25-30

Tasting Notes:

Notes of pear and apple interweave with hints of vanilla and minerals on the nose. With a sip, flavors of green apple and Asian pear open up into suggestions of key lime pie and fresh minerals. A lively Chardonnay with a fresh acidity, fans of bright white wines should give this bottle a try. 550 cases were made.

Rating: 88

446_full

Noble Vines “446” 2013 Chardonnay

Grape(s): 100% Chardonnay

Region: Monterey County, Ca

Price: 10-15

Tasting Notes:

Aromatics of pear, pineapple, honeydew, and vanilla greet the senses. A sip delivers flavors of tropical fruit and melon that are accented by traces of creamy oak, sweet spice, and lemon custard. A friendly Chardonnay, with an approachable acidity, it’s an excellent value.

Rating: 89

2013-unoaked-chardonnay

Carmel Road 2013 Unoaked Chardonnay

Grape(s): 100% Chardonnay

Region: Monterey County, Ca

Price: 15-20

Tasting Notes:

Fragrances of pear and green apple meld with hints of limestone on the nose. The palate offers flavors of crisp pear, apple, and peach accented by suggestions of white blossom and minerals. A crisp Chardonnay, fans of lively whites ought to try a bottle.

Rating: 87

Manzoni-Gris

Manzini 2012 “North Highlands” Pinot Gris

Grape(s): 100% Pinot Gris

Region: Monterey County, Ca

Price: 20-25

Tasting Notes:

A bouquet of tangerine, lime, apple, and peach greets the senses. Flavors of green apple, citrus fruit, and peach are accented by hints of white blossoms and minerals. A crisp, clean Pinot Gris, if you prefer your white wine with some zip, this is a bottle to try.

Rating: 89