(From 2014 Vintage) A second consecutive year of drought was the primary concern entering the 2014 growing season. A mild winter, with very low rainfall, gave way to an early spring, resulting in bud break two to three weeks ahead of normal in most growing areas. Heavy rainfall in April saturated the soil and refilled reservoirs with water sufficient to irrigate vineyards for the growing season, but the rain was not enough to end the drought. Moderate weather conditions prevailed for the late spring and summer, providing ideal conditions for flavor development in the ripening grapes. Due to the early bud break and the ideal growing conditions, harvest started two to three weeks early and progressed smoothly. Indian summer weather patterns prevailed through the fall, allowing the grapes to ripen to full maturity prior to harvest, resulting in wines of exceptionally high quality and concentration. Fruit was harvested cool and gently pressed at the winery in order to preserve the Chardonnay's pure fruit flavors. After settling, the must was partially barrel fermented in a combination of French and American oak, with the remaining juice undergoing fermentation in stainless steel. Malolactic fermentation was then induced to soften the wine's acidity and impart a smooth mouthfeel. To encourage maximum flavor development, the wine was aged in barrel sur lie for six months, with the lees stirred monthly prior to bottling. The wine was bottled starting This crisp, refreshing Chardonnay will complement a variety of foods, including fish prepared in lemon butter sauce, pasta in cream sauce, and herb-roasted chicken.
The Alexander Valley Selection Chardonnay represents the best fruit from several of our Alexander Valley neighbors and our own River Oaks Vineyard. Grapes from the cooler, southern end of the valley typically exhibit an abundance of tropical fruit character intertwined with ripe peach and citrus. All of the wine is barrel fermented, and a portion of the blend undergoes malolactic fermentation. The wine is aged in new and two-year-old 60-gallon French oak barrels. This rich and complex Chardonnay ...