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.

96 Points
Press Democrat
2020 vintage
90 Points
Wine Enthusiast
2020 vintage
Harvest Note
The 2020 vintage was especially phenomenal for Chardonnay. A moderate winter rainfall and warm and dry spring set the stage for an excellent growing season with average canopies. During the summer, Napa Valley experienced cool mornings and hot days. This accelerated ripening led to Chardonnay with optimal fruit flavors and fresh acidity. All Chardonnay vineyards were harvested in August, making 2020 an unusually early vintage for Sequoia Grove.
Tasting Note
Aromas of toasted almond, tropical pineapple, and brioche dominate the nose followed by hints of tarragon, and eucalyptus flower. On the palate are flavors of bright lemon curd, candied walnuts, and an intriguing mineral component. This Chardonnay is beautifully creamy with a luscious bright acidity on the finish, reminiscent of a lemon tart. Serve slightly chilled.
Technical Data
GRAPES: 100% Chardonnay
APPELLATION: Napa Valley
PH: 3.47
ACIDITY: 6.2 g/l
ABV: 14.1%
AGING: Aged for 10 months sur lies in French Oak, 35% new
Unique Selling Points
  • 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

Chardonnay
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.
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