2018 E11EVEN CHARDONNAY
This Chardonnay comes from a brand-new source for us, from the steep hillsides of Peake Ranch Vineyard located on the eastern end of the Sta. Rita Hills AVA on Santa Rosa Road. The combination of the North, South, East, and West facing slopes coupled with the exposure to varying degrees of cool wind give the vineyard a diversity of fruit flavor profiles. We chose to work with the Wente Clone of Chardonnay from this property, characterized by smaller berries, golden color, good mineral content, low sugar, and big, bright acidity. We protected its beautiful structure by fermenting in neutral French Burgundy barrels, which promoted a softer oak integration and with a better expression of fruit characteristics. We employed partial malolactic fermentation, for increased texture and mouth feel, then aged the wine for 8 months in a mix of neutral and stainless-steel barrels. Our 2018 Chardonnay displays mesmerizing notes of apple blossoms, lemon balm, salt-crusted pineapple, wet stone, and fresh baked apple pie crust.