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2020 Elke Vineyard Chardonnay

Aromas of lemon merengue, honeysuckle, vanilla, and cinnamon. In the glass, the fruit flavors are ripe and forward, with summer stone fruit and melon balanced by dependable Anderson Valley acidity and a twist of orange peel.

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$34.00 per Bottle
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$408.00 per Case
 

Tasting Notes

2020 was our 12th vintage of Chardonnay, but our first from the Elke Vineyard. We were very curious to see how the quality compared to our long, previous run with Donnelley Creek Vineyard. With the same grower and clone, and from the same section of Anderson Valley just a mile down the road, disappoint it did not. Right out of the glass jump aromas of lemon meringue, honeysuckle, vanilla and cinnamon. In the glass, the fruit flavors are ripe and forward, with summer stone fruit and melon balanced by dependable Anderson Valley acidity and a twist of orange peel. Barrel fermentation and nine months of aging in French oak have added a touch of toasty richness to this elegant Chardonnay.

Vineyard Designation

Elke Vineyard

Vineyard Notes

For all its ups and downs, 2020 was almost the perfect vintage. Normally we are treated to a heatwave at some point in Mendocino, but it never came. The grapes had a long, mellow summer to slowly accumulate flavor until they were bursting with it. Few exceptional things may have come out of that challenging year; the quality of Chardonnay grapes was one of them.

Winemaker Notes

The grapes were harvested early in the morning and whole bunch pressed into tank. After 48 hours of settling the juice was racked into French oak barrels (25% new). The barrels were not inoculated, and three days later wild yeast began to noticeably ferment. After about 15 days the barrels were inoculated with malo-lactic bacteria as the ferments finished. The barrels were topped and stirred biweekly until the New Year, then only topped. The wine remained on lees for 6 months. It was filtered to allow aging but not fined.

Ratings

90 points ~ James Suckling

Awards

Double Gold: San Francisco Chronicle Intl Wine Competition
Download Wine Notes
Vintage 2020
Wine Style White Wine
Varietal Chardonnay
Varietal Composition 100% Chardonnay
Appellation Anderson Valley
Harvest Date September 7, 2020
Acid 6.8 g/L
PH 3.33
Aging 9 months
Barrel Aging 9 months 75% Neutral Oak 25% New French Oak
Bottling Date July 20, 2021
Alcohol % 13.1%
Size 750 ml