Rombauer Chardonnay: Arden Park Crack?


I received an e-mail today from a local wine retailer who jokingly referred to Rombauer Chardonnay as “Arden Park crack.” I called him up. “Pretty funny,” I said. “Did you make that up?”

“No,” replied Dave Cancilla, a junior partner at Beyond Napa in Lyon Village on Fair Oaks Boulevard. “In the East Bay, Rombauer’s known as Danville crack. On the Peninsula, it’s called Hillsborough crack.” According to Google, it’s also known as Blackhawk crack.

The pricey Chardonnay (currently $32 a bottle) has so many well-heeled fans, Cancilla said, “it’s almost like they put something addictive in it.” Other wineries try to copy Rombauer. Elizabeth Spencer, for instance, makes a $19 Rombauer clone. But Rombauer aficionados are not easily swayed away from their fave pour.

I have a friend who loves Rombauer. The next time I see her, I’ll have to call it “Fab Forties crack.”