Tasting Date: 4/4/2012
Varietal: Chardonnay 2009
Country: Monterey County, Calif.
Tasting Date Price: $12.99
Rating: WS 2009 87; WE 2009 86; Robert Parker 87
Alcohol Content: 13.2%
Vineyard Website: click here
Visual Aspect: Straw
Nose: Fresh floral, citrus, peach & nectarine aromas are smooth & easy
Palate: Tastes pretty sweet, w/ sugar & honeysuckle richness. But the tangerine fruit flavor is deep & impressive, & the vanilla & buttered toast notes from oak are what consumers like.
Proximity to the Pacific Ocean gives Monterey County the cool, foggy climate that is ideal for growing Chardonnay grapes. Typically, bud break begins several weeks earlier and harvest ends several weeks later in Monterey County than in other Central Coast growing regions. This extra month of time on the vine allows the grapes to develop a crisp, bright acidity and lush tropical flavors. Monterey County houses the significant Monterey AVA, which includes nine sub-regions, united by the cooling influence of Monterey Bay.
Juicy tropical flavors mixed with hints of vanilla and spice. Flavors of lush pineapple, mango and tart pippin apple give way to clover honey and toasted sugar notes.
The grapes were harvested at night and in the early morning to keep the fruit cool. The must was membrane drained and pressed, then kept cool and allowed to settle before racking to the fermentation tank. Both upright stainless steel tanks and oak barrels were used to ferment the wine. A portion of the wine underwent malolactic fermentation to add more depth and richness to the finished wine.