Review: Rodney Strong Reserve Wines, 2024 Releases

Review: Rodney Strong Reserve Wines, 2024 Releases

Today we look at a trio of wines from Sonoma’s Rodney Strong — all part of its Reserve line. (You’ll recognize them by the black labels embossed with gold script.)

2021 Rodney Strong Reserve Russian River Valley Pinot Noir – Hearty and rich, with bold notes of black cherry, cola, and black tea, it’s a powerful wine that is balanced by its suppleness, almost an iconic example of the best of what the Russian River produces. While notes of chocolate and hazelnut emerge late in the game, the wine remains tart and refreshing, never devolving into the overly savory, meaty experience that so many Russian River pinots seem to be experiencing these days. With touches of blackberry and a whiff of mixed florals on the finish, it’s lovely on its own but a killer when paired with the right meal. A / $60

2018 Rodney Strong Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon – Six years old, but still drinking with an effusive youthfulness: Plenty of tannin and graphite are on tap to temper a core of blackberries and plums, the whole affair laced with chocolate-covered cherries and hinting at oak-dusted vanilla on the finish. The tarry tannins however remain thick throughout, and the wine is still nowhere near ready to drink; another 5 years would probably be appropriate for laying this one down before enjoying. Decant well, or call me in 2029. B+ / $60

2021 Rodney Strong Reserve Russian River Valley Chardonnay – A classically styled California chardonnay, rich with buttery oak, vanilla, and a kick of guava. A sharper and lightly acidic lemon curd note is present but moderated by the unctuous body, keeping its vanilla in focus along with some mild notes of cashew and walnut emerging as the wine gets some warmth to it. There’s just a touch of peppery and grassy greenery on the finish; maybe this could stand another year or two in cellar before drinking? B+ / $48

2018 Rodney Strong Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.

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