This elegant Chardonnay has delicate aromas of orange blossom and stone fruit merging with flavors of honey, orange marmalade, and brioche before finishing with a note of lemon zest.
Harvest in 2016 started in the middle of August during a pattern of warm sunny days cooled by foggy mornings and breezy afternoons for most of the area. The early months of the year were very mild with little rain allowing the vines to progress steadily and uneventfully. Yields throughout the region were slightly below average but moderate weather starting in early summer gave the fruit plenty of time to develop great color and flavor, resulting in beautifully balanced wines.
Fruit for this opulent style Chardonnay comes from the Obsidian Ridge Vineyard in the southern end of Sonoma County’s prestigious Knights Valley Appellation. The warmest appellation in Sonoma County, Knights Valley produces wines with big aromatics and flavor. Obsidian Ridge vineyard gets its namesake from the volcanic soil unearthed while the owners drilled looking for water. The Chardonnay grapes here sit on high elevation terrain, in the hills just above the county line overlooking the town of Calistoga.
The fruit is picked at daybreak and delivered to the winery while still cold to preserve the wine’s delicate flavors, aromas, and acidity. Grapes are pressed whole cluster, then fermented sur lie in a temperature-controlled room maintained at 55 degrees to ensure a slow fermentation. For this Extended Age wine, select barrels were set aside, chosen for their taste profile and acidity level, and given an extra 12 months of aging and battonage (stirring) to impart a rounder, more complex mouthfeel.