2012 Chardonnay, Sonoma Coast
"Fleshy but dry on the palate, offering intense poached pear and lemon curd flavors that spread out nicely on the back half." – Josh Raynolds, Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar, May 2014
The 2012 growing season was close to ideal with temperate and steady temperatures that produced a long, moderate growing season with extended hang time and even ripening. In the cool reaches of the Sonoma Coast, harvest waited until the middle two weeks of October.
Our appellation Chardonnays are given less new oak—16% percent in 2012—and spend less time in barrel—twelve months–than the single-vineyard Chardonnays, but otherwise are made identically. We press the whole clusters for delicacy. Native-yeast and full native malolactic fermentation take place in barrel, with sur lies bâtonnage. After aging in barrel 12 months, it is fined and stabilized in tank during the following harvest. This wine was then bottled without filtration in February, 2014.
70% Martinelli Charles Ranch Vineyard; 16% Platt Vineyard; 11% Frostwatch Vineyard; 3% Three Sisters Vineyard. These are cool sites, with low vigor soil such as Goldridge Loam. Some vineyards are planted to a larger-clustered clone—typically, UC Davis clone 4—or they might be a younger planting of a Wente or Dijon selection. This is the fifth vintage to be dominated by the Martinelli Charles Ranch on Bohan Dillon Road. Our Sonoma Coast bottling reflects its region and so is a bit crisper and leaner than our Russian River.