Critical Acclaim

THE WINE ADVOCATE 2015, Robert Parker

“This is a tour de force Chardonnay” 2014 The Judge.
“One of the finest Chardonnays I tasted” 2014 Chardonnay.
“Kongsgaard also makes an amazing Syrah” 2014 Syrah.
“The 2013 Chardonnay The Judge is perfect, and certainly one of the greatest Chardonnays I have ever tasted, 100 points.”

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THE WINE ADVOCATE 2014, Robert Parker

“With two great vintages (2012 and 2013) in the pipeline, and with 2014 looking superb at the time of my visit, Kongsgaard is overflowing with liquid treasures.”

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THE WINE ADVOCATE ARCHIVE, Robert Parker

“John Kongsgaard is in search of the Holy Grail and these are the most interesting, naturally made wines one will find on Planet Earth.” Reviews prior to 2014.

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VINOUS 2015, Antonio Galloni

“The power, intensity and the drive are dazzling” 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon.
“This is an incredibly vivid, translucent Chardonnay” 2014 Chardonnay.
“Power and finesse have rarely coexisted on this level” 2014 Syrah.

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VINOUS 2014, Antonio Galloni

“This is a fabulous showing from Kongsgaard … The 2013 dazzles with its nuance and pure class.” 2013 The Judge.
“Kongsgaard’s 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the most compelling, riveting wines of the year.”
“Another exciting, viscerally thrilling wine.” 2013 Syrah.

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VINOUS, Stephen Tanzer

Syrah Vertical 1998-2013 “Arguably California’s greatest single Syrah bottling. They are wonderfully rich and complex, and evolving at a deliciously slow pace.” May 2016

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VINOUS, Antonio Galloni

The Judge Vertical 2005-2012, “A drop-dead gorgeous beauty, the 2012 Chardonnay The Judge is stunning.”

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THE JUDGE AND THE MASTER, Karen MacNeil

“Kongsgaard is a man who many (including me) consider the master of California chardonnay.  The 2013 Judge is unlike any California chardonnay I have ever experienced. … Comparisons to Montrachet float in the mind.” January 13, 2016

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THE WINE BIBLE, Karen MacNeil

“John Kongsgaard is a legendary winemaker in Napa Valley.  Among all of his immaculate wines, I may love this one (Syrah) the best.” 2nd edition, October 13, 2015

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I'LL DRINK TO THAT, Levi Dalton

Interview with John Kongsgaard: Episode 327, January 5, 2016
-Jump to 2.40 to skip the ads.

-Listen to Levi's Interview with John

NAPA VALLEY THEN AND NOW, Kelli White

“John Kongsgaard is among the most influential winemakers in Napa Valley.”
“The 2008 Judge: a transcendental experience now; one can only imagine how tremendous this wine will become with age.”

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THE WINE SPECTATOR, James Laube

Napa’s Fortunate Son – John Kongsgaard Forged His Own Path To World-Class Chardonnay, July 31, 2014 – Cover Story.

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WINE SPECTATOR, James Laube

Patience and Low Yields – Key to Quality at Kongsgaard, July 31, 2014.

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THE WINE SPECTATOR, James Laube

Storm Clouds, Silver Lining – “Both of Kongsgaard’s 2010 Chardonnays are sensational.” May 31, 2013

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THE WINE SPECTATOR, James Laube

“Number 5 or the Top 100 Wines of 2013:  2010 Napa Valley Chardonnay. John Kongsgaard is at the top of the Chardonnay game in California, with wines that feature balance, grace and elegance. 95 points”

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THE WINE SPECTATOR, James Laube

“Number 8 of the Top 100 Wines of 2006:  2003 Chardonnay — a fantastic, opulent mouthful of Chardonnay, with complex, concentrated layers of fig, cream, butterscotch and marshmallow, the flavors go on seemingly forever. Chardonnay in this style doesn’t get much better, and for all its richness and depth, this wine has amazing finesse.” 97 points

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THE NEW CALIFORNIA WINE, Jon Bonné

“When young, The Judge Chardonnay is as powerful a wine as you’ll find. Defined more by structure than flavor at first, it reveals deeply layered fruit and a clover-honey accent with air (or time)”  book published 2013.

SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, Jon Bonné

“How John Kongsgaard Rewrote the Rules – Kongsgaard is producing what for three decades have been some of California’s, and arguably the world’s most timeless expressions of white wine.” July 22, 2013

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2013 POCKET GUIDE TO WINE, Hugh Johnson

“The Judge Chardonnay may be the best in California, with its intense minerality and great power. Napa Valley Chardonnay, from Carneros grapes, is also splendid.” 2013

INTERNATIONAL WINE CELLAR, Stephan Tanzer

“My recent tour of the best Napa Valley addresses began with a bang with John Kongsgaard’s wines. Kongsgaard’s performance in the tricky 2011 vintage is especially impressive.” May/June 2013.

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THE RHONE REPORT, Jeb Dunnuck

“This was a thrilling tasting with John Kongsgaard; and his Hudson Vineyard Syrah is one of the most seamless, silky wines I’ve ever tasted. Make no mistake though, these are hedonistically styled wines that feature massive amounts of voluptuous fruit and texture, yet what sets them apart is that they also possess brilliant depth, balance, and structure.” December 2011

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NEW YORK TIMES 2011, Eric Asimov

“Kongsgaard consistently makes the best Chardonnay in California today.”

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NEW YORK TIMES 2010, Eric Asimov

“Something in the richness of the Kongsgaard reminded me of the Corton-Charlemagne.”

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NEW YORK TIMES 2008, Eric Azimov

“Cabernet Sauvignon that I think is exquisite.”

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THE PURPLE PAGES, Jancis Robinson

“2001 Chardonnay, sweet and seductive, positively slides on to the palate. So powerful yet with real structure and fabulous acidity. Reminds me slightly of DRC 1978 Montrachet.”

THE ROBB REPORT, Best of the Best

“2001 Chardonnay — massive mineral foundation rises gradually on the palate toward complex traceries of oak, citrus, and luminous acidity. This tiny family operation has quietly produced a white wine all its own that takes its cue as much from Montrachet or Meursault as from Napa.” 2005

MATT KRAMER'S NEW CALIFORNIA WINE, Matt Kramer

“Kongsgaard makes some of Napa Valley’s most original-tasting white wines. These are wines of real character and distinction. Kongsgaard is an intense, lemony, dense Chardonnay that is more reminiscent of a grand cru Chablis, which is no small achievement.” September 6, 2004

FOOD AND WINE MAGAZINE, Winemaker of the Year

“His transfixing Chardonnay is a wine so profoundly layered; you feel that you don’t so much drink it as excavate it.” 2004

THE FIMASAURUS, Pianist Yefim "Fima" Bronfman

“I have to brag about something that’s much more important to me than anything else in my career: There is a wine named after me, Fimasaurus, produced by John Kongsgaard in Napa Valley” Bloomberg 2013.

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