Vineyards: Napa Valley Chardonnay comes from two superb Napa Valley sites. The first is located in the Los Carneros AVA, near the cold San Pablo Bay, and represents sixty percent of the release. Its long, cool season brings rich, tropical and stone fruit aromas and flavors. The second site represents forty percent of the blend, is located near the Yountville Crossroads, and is over 26 years old. These rugged, older vines deliver a fraction of the yield of today’s more prolific clones, but what is offered is exceptional, offering texture and complexity.
Winemaking: Hand-picked Chardonnay clusters were field-sorted into half-ton bins between September 10 and 21, then gravity-transferred into the press where a gently whole cluster press cycle delivered a modest 155 gallons per ton. After settling, the juice was fermented in temperature controlled stainless tanks (80%) and new French barrels (20%). Ten months tank and new French barrel maturation along with several battonage series (lees stirring) and malo in the 40% of the barrel lets helped develop layered texture and its classic mouth-feel. Creamy, crisp, balanced, and expresses this celebrated vintage perfectly.
Bright, textured fruit, very subtle new French oak and a creamy texture; all in balance with fragrant and floral pear, melon and mineral notes. We think it is a “textbook” example of this noble variety grown in these outstanding Napa Valley sub-appellations.