Our #1 White Wine of 2017 Is Back for Its Final Curtain Call
Out of the thousands of wines we tasted last year, the 2016 Arietta “Quartet” Sauvignon Blanc climbed the Wine Access scoreboard, rising to our #1 white wine of 2017. Originally crafted with the intention of being a restaurant wine, our own Vanessa Conlin secured the entire allocation from owners Fritz and Caren Hatton—they’re all opera pals (both of the on-stage and enthusiast kind, which is a story unto itself). But for now...
This near-impossible-to-find wine from Arietta was crafted by 100-point winemaker Andy Erickson, formerly of Screaming Eagle. Arietta’s wines grace the luminary wine lists of Michelin-starred restaurants like Per Se, The Modern, Jean-Georges, Blue Hill at Stone Barns, The French Laundry, and The Restaurant at Meadowood Napa Valley—to name just a few.
This vintage is the first release of “Quartet” Sauvignon Blanc, with illustrious vineyard sources from Carneros to a unique hillside site on Sonoma Mountain— it is among the most distinctive premium white wines from Napa Valley, and arguably from around the world. Entirely barrel-fermented and matured in partial new French oak, Andy Erickson has crafted an expressive wine with mouth-watering freshness, length, and a texture akin to silk. It is captivating, harmonious and sensuous, with layers of citrus and orchard fruit, vibrant acidity and a voluptuously long finish.
Founded in 1996 by music-loving friends Fritz and Caren Hatton and John and Maggy Kongsgaard, the Arietta wines earned instant recognition for their balance, elegance, and expressiveness. Andy Erickson took the winemaking reins in 2005, and added white wines to the Arietta family—wines that have never since failed to cause wine critics to gush. Robert Parker calls them “powerful,” “authoritative,” while Antonio Galloni adds “fabulous,” “absolutely gorgeous,” and Stephen Tanzer declares them “always splendid.”
Our own Sur Lucero MS helped usher Arietta into the limelight when he featured them on the wine list of The French Laundry. Now, with the release of this captivating and layered 2016 Arietta Quartet Sauvignon Blanc—Erickson shows what he’s capable of in this seductive and extraordinary white.