Napa Valley Chardonnay
/ Napa Valley
Sequoia Grove Napa Valley Chardonnay is meticulously hand harvested and, upon arrival at the winery, immediately whole cluster pressed to tank where it is cold settled and racked 24 hours later to another tank to begin fermentation. As the fermentation progresses, the tank is barreled down in stages. The first stage gets the most barrel extraction. The second stage is a combination of barrel extraction and fruit flavors. The third stage, at lower brix, preserves the fresh fruit characteristics. The wine finishes primary fermentation in 100% French oak barrels. The wine is aged for 10 months on the lees where it undergoes battonage (lees stirring) every two weeks, as each lot demands. For the first time for Sequoia Grove, because of the very high acidity given by the growing season, this wine went through 7% secondary malolactic fermentation to balance the palate. This Chardonnay is sourced from four vineyards: long-time Napa Valley growers Jim Haire (Carneros) and Joe Ghisletta (Carneros), in addition to Cunat (Oak Knoll), and a new vineyards source for us: Tula Vista (Carneros). Jim Haire grows old Wente clone, whose small clusters pack concentrated, tropical flavor, and Robert Young clone, known for a lemon, lime character. Joe Ghisletta grows Dijon clone 76 which gives stone fruit character. Cunat grows Dijon clone 95 and 96, which also gives stone fruit and melon character. Tula Vista is clone 17, also known for lemon, lime character.
Tasting Panel2017 vintage
Very pale gold in color, this classic Chardonnay is the ideal balance of Old World restraint with California sunshine. The aromas and flavors are delicate, with citrus, floral and mineral notes on a wine of fresh acidity and medium body.
This is a very food-friendly wine and will go well with most dishes, from appetizers to soups to main courses. Try it with a just-picked spring lettuce and fresh herb salad, or with a mature, delicate brie cheese.
points of distinction
- Grapes come from cool climate sites within Napa Valley, producing a fresh style of wine.
- Ages 8 months on lees in French oak barrels for added complexity
- No malolactic fermentation is allowed, to preserve fresh, bright acidity in the wine.
about the grape +
Though it has a distinctive profile, Chardonnay reflects other factors such as soil composition and vinification technique. Chardonnay is a reliable, hardy and prolific vine whose only real vulnerabilities are frost and uneven development of fruit.
– Molly Hill, Winemaker
“Temperature and time are the two most significant winemaking tools.”