2014 Stainless Chardonnay
Tropical notes of juicy Mandarin, ripe kiwi and papaya are highlighted by aromas of lemon drop, apple blossom and refreshing minerality. The palate supports the nose, revealing the Stainless winemaking with its round, weighty mouthfeel. Crisp acidity and flavors of white nectarine, mango and key lime pie filling round out the clean, lingering finish.
This vintage was sourced from a number of coastally influenced vineyards ranging from Monterey County to San Luis Obispo. The common theme amongst these vineyards is cool climate, elevated sites with well drained sedimentary soils and naturally limited yields.
2014 began with a very warm, dry winter, leading to an early bud break in mid-February. A warm spring and summer combined to give us our earliest harvest ever, which is beneficial for this style of wine because of the acidity retention. Furthermore, a lack of heat spikes allowed us to pick the grapes at peak maturity, resulting in a beautiful unoaked Chardonnay.
The fruit was processed as soon as possible after picking and pressed cool to preserve freshness. The juice was racked to tank for a 24-hour period of cold settling, then it was racked to another stainless steel tank for a long, cool, carefully controlled fermentation, utilizing a number of different yeast strains to add complexity to the wine. Following fermentation, the wine was immediately racked off the lees, stabilized and bottled to capture the pure essence of the Chardonnay varietal.
The majority of this Chardonnay is made from Clones 4 and 5, two nearly identical clones that provide ample aromatics of crisp apple, tropical fruit and a keen acidity that is vital in an unoaked Chardonnay. Smaller amounts of Dijon Clones 75, 76 and 96 provide accents of minerality, nuttiness and a lush mid-palate.