2011 Carneros Chardonnay
Bright, citrus focused with hints of Kefir lime, kumquat and granny smith apple. A vibrant acidity makes for a fresh and well-balanced wine.
Pairings: Marcona almonds, garden salads and grilled fish.
90 points, “Editors’ Choice”, Wine Enthusiast Magazine, 8/2013
When sourcing Chardonnay fruit, we seek those Carneros vineyards that offer diversity in both aspect and clonal selection. The result is a complex and vibrant Chardonnay most reflective of the Carneros region.
Clones: Dijon 95, 96, 548 and 809; Wente and Cabral
Terroir: Carneros is known for its loam and clay soils; a mixture of flat land and rolling hillsides and has the reliable marine fog that rolls in at evening t and burns off in the mid-morning.
A cooler than average year, with the least amount of degree days since tracking them in the 1980s. The low temperatures and extended time on the vine made for graceful aromatics and vibrant acidity in all our wines. 2011 is considered “winemaker’s vintage” meaning nature offered up a challenge and thanks to many years of making Chardonnay and Pinot Noir we were able to create beautiful wines by executing on sound decisions in the vineyard and cellar.
Harvest Date: September 23 to October 17
After night harvesting, the Chardonnay fruit arrives at Saintsbury within the hour of its pick. The clusters are sorted and transferred directly to a gentle, whole cluster press. The settled juice then goes to barrel for fermentation. During its 8 months in French oak barrels, we employee bâtonnage to ensure a complex and well-balanced wine. The wine was bottled in June and finished with a Stelvin screwcap closure.
Aging: Partial malolactic fermentation with minimal batonnage in 20% new French oak barrels (François Frères and Taransaud) for 8 months.
Case Production: 8,044