by Fred McMillin
for April 8, 1998
Ah Hah, Cambria
The Santa Maria Valley [on the northern side of Santa Barbara County] produces some of California's finest Chardonnay.
In the twinkling of an eye, Cambria has become the biggest winery in the Santa Maria Valley... not suprising since it forms part of the Kendall-Jackson empire. Cambria was financed by a syndicate that included Jackson's wife and fellow lawyer, Barbara Banke, who is president of the winery.
...James Halliday, "Wine Atlas of California"
So Cambria was created a decade ago, but there was a problem. Barbara Banke wrote me, "Cambria Katherine's Chardonnay was struggling to be recognized. Something dramatic was needed... The solution turned out to be simple. We barnstormed across the country, giving the trade and consumers a chance to taste Katherine's blind against top Chardonnays from Europe and America. Katherine's came up the winner again and again."
If you missed the tour, you don't have to miss the wine. The 1996 is now on the market. Winemaker Dave Guffy is proud of it..."classic Santa Barbara Chardonnay with rich, tropical flavors."
1996 Chardonnay, Katherine's Vineyard, Santa Maria Vly.
The New York Times quotes Jess Jackson as saying "We are always looking for good properties." He surely nailed one in Santa Maria. PPS—Katherine is the teenage daughter of Barbara and Jess.
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