The Underground Wineletter – John Tilson

2016 Gambal+Work Chardonnay Francesca Vineyard Sta. Rita Hills
Light yellow in color this Chardonnay exhibits a lovely subtle citrus perfume with a kiss of vanilla accented by a floral nuance.  With great style, balance, and finesse, the wine is flavorful with very pure fruit showing hints of white peach and citrus with a very faint vanilla tinge.  Bright and crisp with a lingering finish, this is a very impressive young Chardonnay that should show further development over many years into the future – Outstanding Plus.

2016 Gambal+Work Chardonnay Bentrock Vineyard Sta. Rita Hills
Light yellow in color this wine has a gorgeous floral perfume with subtle hints of spice and citrus. On the palate, it has lovely fruit with richness and depth that is expressed in a very elegant and finesseful style.  The subtle flavors of peach and citrus are accented by a faint floral undertone and are followed by a lingering finish.  This is a really gorgeous young Chardonnay that has many years of development ahead - Outstanding Plus.

Apstein on Wine – Michael Apstein

The Gambal+Work Francesca Vineyard Chardonnay (95 points, $65) is breath-takingly alive and vibrant.  A stone-y mineral quality dominates and enlivens the palate. Pure and linear, the focus is definitely on the mineral aspect, not on the fruitiness of the grape. It’s a long and refined wine that tingles the palate with each sip. 

A chalk-y mineral component in the Bentrock Vineyard Chardonnay (95 points, $65) grabs your attention and nicely offsets the wine’s re-strained fruitiness. It’s a touch riper and rounder than their Francesca Vineyard bottling, but all the elements are beautifully integrated in this wine, whose charms explode in the finish.

If forced to make a comparison with Burgundy (and after all, that’s Gambal’s breeding ground), the Francesca bottling speaks of Puligny Montrachet while the Bentrock evokes Chassagne-Montrachet. 

Wine Enthusiast – Matt Kettmann

Gambal+Work 2017 Chardonnay (Sta. Rita Hills) 93 Points
This blend of Bentrock and Francesca vineyards offers toasty, savory aromas of sea salt, dried apple, seared lemon flesh and butter crackers on the nose.The palate is expertly tense in structure, offering flavors of yellow grapefruit, rounded nectarine, ripe apple, more sea salt and a vanilla paste on the finish.

Gambal+Work 2016 Bentrock Vineyard Chardonnay (Sta. Rita Hills) 95 Points
Clean and bright aromas of sharp lemon, crushed chalk and lightly toasted almond are very reminiscent of Alex Gambal’s bottlings from Burgundy on the nose of this promising collaboration with Peter Work of Ampelos Cellars. There is phenomenal tension to the palate, with tightly woven chalk and seared nectarine flavors. 

Gambal+Work 2016 Francesca Vineyard Chardonnay (Sta. Rita Hills) 92 Points
This is the brand new project from Alex Gambal and Peter Work of Ampelos Cellars in the Sta. Rita Hills, where Gambal is hoping to replicate his Burgundian style. This wine’s round aromas if white peach, sea salt caramel and nectarine syrup lead into an energetic palate that’s sharply citrus at first before the chalky minerality takes hold.

Wine Spectator – Kim Marcus

GAMBAL+WORK Chardonnay Sta. Rita Hills FrancescaVineyard 2016 93 points | $65 | 150 cases made | White
A big, creamy white, offering a luscious mix of dried apricot, apple tart and glazed pear flavors that feature a backbone of glistening acidity. Oily richness shows on the broad finish. Drink now through 2024. ~K.M.

GAMBAL+WORK Chardonnay Sta. Rita Hills BentrockVineyard 2016 92 points | $65 | 75 cases made | White
Steely, with hints of dried tarragon to the well-structured ripe apple, dried peach and pear flavors.  Mineral and stony notes show on the crisp finish.  Drink now through 2023. ~K.M.


And for our Danish friends, here is a link to a review from Renelangdahl.

Det her handler ikke om banal national stolthed. Vi har danske vinmagere overalt i verden, men tilfældigvis har en danskfødt vinbonde, Peter Work på Ampelos Cellars i Santa Rita Hills, Californien, begået en vinøs genistreg. Og det råber jeg ud til alle! Køb det, støvsug den danske importør, når vinen bliver frigivet.   continue reading >>