(From 2013 Vintage) The fruit is pressed immediately after harvest partially as whole berries and partially as clusters to control skin contact. Multiple yeast strains are used to enhance the wine's spectrum of aromatic and flavor complexity. To further fine-tune flavors, the alcoholic fermentation of 75 to 80 percent of the must takes place in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks and the balance in small French oak barrels.
Approximately half of the tank-fermented component is then transferred to small French oak barrels, with the barrel-fermented component, for three to five months' aging. The barrels range in age from one to two years old, and the majority of the wine is aged in the older barrels. The barrel-fermented component is periodically stirred, a process called "bâtonnage," to redistribute the lees, which enriches the wine's texture and helps integrate the fruit flavors with the oak nuances. Up to ten percent of Sémillon adds mineral and ripe fig notes to the blend, and five percent or less of Sauvignon Musqué, a clone of Sauvignon Blanc, contributes a hint of spiciness to the wine. There is no malolactic fermentation.
Wine AdvocateRating: 87/100 - As reviewed in Wine Advocate # 120 on Dec-98
Wine SpectatorRating: 88/100 - As reviewed by Wine Spectator on 11/30/98