In 2005, bud break began in late March, assuring a more typical season than 2004, when bud break occurred three weeks ahead of normal. Some light rains in spring missed the Carneros region during bloom and fruit set, so crop levels were slightly above normal in most blocks. The healthy crop load led to selective fruit thinning throughout the growing season, ensuring excellent intensity of flavor and balance. The Chardonnay harvest of 2005 will be remembered for producing wines of great quality, varietal character and elegance.
These Chardonnay grapes were hand harvested at night to preserve fruit character. Due to the geological diversity of our estate, we harvest blocks based upon optimum ripeness and flavor maturity. The grapes were whole cluster pressed, and the juice was fermented in barrels and aged sur lie, with the lees stirred every two weeks for 5-6 months. 100% of the wine underwent malolactic fermentation and was aged in French oak barrels (27% new) for 7 months.
The aromas in this 2005 Carneros Chardonnay are a combination of crisp green apple, orange blossom, clove and sweet Meyer lemon. It is a classic example of Carneros Chardonnay and shows all the unique characteristics of the region’s terroir. The flavors on the palate show apple and pear layered with bright citrus and lemon curd. Subtle notes of vanilla and spice add texture and round off the long, smooth finish.
The full–bodied flavors of this Chardonnay make it wonderful accompaniment to many different types of cuisine. Try it with grilled swordfish, rosemary-lemon chicken, seafood salads, pasta alfredo, spinach quiche or butternut squash soup.
Composition: 100% Chardonnay
Winemaker: Jeff Stewart
Acid/pH: 0.58 / 3.56
Bottled: July 7, 2006
Released: January 2007