Apex 2005 Chardonnay (Yakima Valley)

A juicy, ripe, full-flavored Chardonnay, built upon a thick core of tropical fruit—guava, mango and papaya. It's done in what might be thought of as a mid-1980s California style—barrel fermented, full malolactic fermentation, lots of buttery oak. But there is the added vibrancy from Washington-grown grapes, which keep their acidity. This is the winery's most successful wine at retail, and it's easy to see why. It is a sure-fire pleaser. Paul Gregutt

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