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Chardonnay

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Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard White Bones 2016 (1x75cl)

** THIS WINE IS HELD IN NO OR LOW STOCK BUT IS QUICKLY BROUGHT IN TO ORDER. ORDERS PLACED BY 9am EACH MONDAY WILL BE WITH US FOR IMMEDIATE DESPATCH ON THURSDAY. **

 

Awarded 98 points (and Exceptional status) by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their review by Patricio Tapia (see blue link below)...

Bodega Catena Zapata, Adrianna Vineyard, White Bones 2016 - Decanter March 2019 review

“The slow ripening provided the 2016 White Bones Chardonnay with a little more structure while retaining very high acidity. The vines, at 1,500 meters in altitude, are planted on limestone-rich soils and didn't need watering in 2016, as it rained a lot more than usual and allowed for a more natural balanced crop. This has 13.1% alcohol and an amazing eight grams of acidity measured in tartaric acid. It's a lot more serious, like an austere version of the 2015, with the balsamic and floral aromas more in the background. It has a sharper palate, with pungent flavors and superb delineation and purity. This is precise like a laser cut, mineral, salty and veeeery serious and compact. Superb!” 

Wine Advocate - 97 points July 2018

In 1902, Nicola Catena, an Italian immigrant, planted his first vineyard in Mendoza, Argentina. The winery has remained under family control — now in its fourth generation — and is one of the few family-owned wine companies in Argentina that remains in Argentine hands. Owned today by Nicolás Catena and his daughter Laura, Bodega Catena Zapata is known as the pioneer of fine wine from Argentina, and Nicolás is recognized as the vintner who revolutionized wine quality in Argentina. A trained economist, Nicolás began this revolution in the early 1980s and continues to challenge himself and his team to make wines that can be counted among the best in the world. His measured approach to viticulture has taken its place in wine history as the pioneer of Malbec and high-altitude viticulture.

Catena wines, first launched in 1992, set a new standard for quality in South America. The wines immediately proved the quality potential of Argentina and garnered the first outstanding reviews for Argentine wines from worldwide media. After more than 20 years, the wines of Catena continue to lead the way in Argentine viticulture and winemaking. The family and the winery’s employees take great pride in carrying on the tradition that began over a century ago.

The Catena family’s estate vineyards are located in the premier growing regions of Villa Bastías, Tupungato; Agrelo, Lujan de Cuyo; Lunlunta, Maipu; Gualtallary, Tupungato and La Consulta, San Carlos. Nicolás believes the terroir of Mendoza's high altitude wine country (3,000 - 5,000 feet above sea level) is unique to the world, and the reality of this belief is expressed in every bottle of Catena wine crafted.

For this wine, see/click the link below for more data from the winemakers themselves.

Bodega Catena Zapata, Adrianna Vineyard White Bones Chardonnay 2016 - fiche technique

100% Chardonnay.

The White Bones Chardonnay has a bright lemon yellow color in the glass. The nose shows an enticing mélange of apples and pears interwoven with stone fruit notes and vanilla. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied with a rich and concentrated mouthfeel and flavors of ripe Anjou pears, apples, quince, and apricot flavors with hints of vanilla and nuttiness. The overall impression of the wine is one of balance with a bright, clean acidity and lingering finish.

ABV = 13.0%.

£71.80

Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard White Bones 2017 (1x75cl)

** THIS WINE IS HELD IN NO OR LOW STOCK BUT IS QUICKLY BROUGHT IN TO ORDER. ORDERS PLACED BY 9am EACH MONDAY WILL BE WITH US FOR IMMEDIATE DESPATCH ON THURSDAY. **

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"This is really incredible now. Cooked apples, mustard flowers, minerals and hints of stone. Full-bodied yet vivid and expansive with lightness and energy on the palate. Eye-opening acidity. It goes on for minutes. A great white, as always. Drink or hold. 99 points". James Suckling, July 2019.

"The nose of the 2017 White Bones Chardonnay jumps out of the glass with its forward personality and its balsamic aromas that mix aromatic herbs and a minty touch. It's more exuberant than the 2018 or any of the White Stones I tasted next to it. The flavors are intense and pungent, with volume and length. The vines are organically farmed, which is not easy in the zone, mainly because of the ants! That has a great effect in the yields, which are reduced, and the juice is very concentrated but shows superb balance. As with the others, this is more in the style of the 2015, whereas the 2018 follows the path of the 2016. 6,000 bottles produced. 96 points". Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, October 2019.

Awarded 17.5 points (of 20) on Jancis Robinson's Purple Pages (www.JancisRobinson.comreviewer Alistair Cooper MW - in September 2019 (see blue link below).

Catena Zapata Adrianna Vineyard White Bones 2017 - jancisrobinson.com Sep 2019 review

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In 1902, Nicola Catena, an Italian immigrant, planted his first vineyard in Mendoza, Argentina. The winery has remained under family control — now in its fourth generation — and is one of the few family-owned wine companies in Argentina that remains in Argentine hands. Owned today by Nicolás Catena and his daughter Laura, Bodega Catena Zapata is known as the pioneer of fine wine from Argentina, and Nicolás is recognized as the vintner who revolutionized wine quality in Argentina. A trained economist, Nicolás began this revolution in the early 1980s and continues to challenge himself and his team to make wines that can be counted among the best in the world. His measured approach to viticulture has taken its place in wine history as the pioneer of Malbec and high-altitude viticulture.

Catena wines, first launched in 1992, set a new standard for quality in South America. The wines immediately proved the quality potential of Argentina and garnered the first outstanding reviews for Argentine wines from worldwide media. After more than 20 years, the wines of Catena continue to lead the way in Argentine viticulture and winemaking. The family and the winery’s employees take great pride in carrying on the tradition that began over a century ago.

The Catena family’s estate vineyards are located in the premier growing regions of Villa Bastías, Tupungato; Agrelo, Lujan de Cuyo; Lunlunta, Maipu; Gualtallary, Tupungato and La Consulta, San Carlos. Nicolás believes the terroir of Mendoza's high altitude wine country (3,000 - 5,000 feet above sea level) is unique to the world, and the reality of this belief is expressed in every bottle of Catena wine crafted.

For this wine, see/click the link below for more data from the winemakers themselves.

Bodega Catena Zapata, Adrianna Vineyard White Bones Chardonnay 2017 - fiche technique

100% Chardonnay.

The White Bones Chardonnay has a bright lemon yellow color in the glass. The nose shows an enticing mélange of apples and pears interwoven with stone fruit notes and vanilla. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied with a rich and concentrated mouthfeel and flavors of ripe Anjou pears, apples, quince, and apricot flavors with hints of vanilla and nuttiness. The overall impression of the wine is one of balance with a bright, clean acidity and lingering finish.

ABV = 13.0%.

£71.80

Dawson & James Chardonnay 2016 (1x75cl)

The 2015 vintage was awarded a Platinum & Best in Show medal and 97 points at the 2019 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details).

For other 2019 DWWA winners, click here.

The 2015 was also awarded 95 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their December 2017 edition review of cool-climate Australian Chardonnay (Victoria and Tasmania) (see blue link below).

Dawson James Chardonnay 2015 - December 2017 Decanter review

Also reminisced about in the September 2020 edition... 

Dawson & James Chardonnay 2016 - September 2020 Decanter review

Dawson James is the project of Peter Dawson and Tim James, who met in 1976 when they were both working at Hardy & Sons, and where they continued to work alongside each other for 20 years. They have since moved on to different projects, including Willunga 100 in McLaren Vale for Tim, but have collaborated again to produce the Dawson & James wines in Tasmania. Their shared passion for Australian art, farming, camping and gastronomy, as well as their dedication to fine Australian wine, have combined in this exciting project, and the wines are the proof of their winemaking wisdom and enthusiasm. The wines come from the Meadowbank Vineyard, which is located around 60 kilometres north-west of Hobart, an area characterised by rugged topography and the fast flowing, pristine waters of the Derwent river.

The Meadowbank Vineyard is located in the Derwent Valley in southern Tasmania, and was planted in 1989. The site is 70 metres above the river level and the north-easterly aspect gives it optimal sunlight exposure for grape ripening. The soil is a combination of brown sandy loams over structured clays and sandstone rock. It has a devigorating nature, helping the balanced growth and structure of the vines. Vines are trellised to single cordon and managed to one bunch per shoot, and yields are kept at less than six tonnes per hectare.

Spring and summer were dry, with less rainfall than usual and the mean daily temperature 1.5°C above the long term average. These conditions favoured a good fruit set and vineyard yields were above average. Despite the warmer ripening period, there was no significant heat spikes and the grapes could retain freshness and acidity. The grapes were hand-picked on 9th March, the earliest harvest date since the project began.

On arrival at the winery, fruit was whole bunch pressed. Free run juice was transferred to oak sourced from Burgundian cooperages. Primary fermentation took place in oak, 40% of which was new. This was followed by partial malolactic fermentation. The wine remained in oak and on its lees for nine months with fortnightly stirring.

100% Chardonnay.

This Chardonnay has a bright pale yellow colour. The aromas are subtle creamy, nutty and toasty notes derived from barrel fermentation accompanied by zesty lemon pith fruit characters. On the palate, there are intense citrus fruit flavours which are balanced by lively acidity and mineral characters.

ABV = 12.5%.

£38.15

Errazuriz, Las Pizarras Chardonnay 2018 (1x75cl)

** THIS WINE IS HELD IN NO OR LOW STOCK BUT IS QUICKLY BROUGHT IN TO ORDER. ORDERS PLACED BY 9am EACH MONDAY WILL BE WITH US FOR DESPATCH ON THE THURSDAY. **

Awarded 97 points and Outstanding status by Decanter in their October 2020 article South American Whites: A New Era (see blue link below).

Errazuriz, Las Pizarras Chardonnay 2018 - October 2020 Decanter review

 

See this article for more detail on the Las Pizarras Chardonnays (especially 2015-2017) from Greg Sherwood MW. As he points out, "As a Chardonnay/white Burgundy aficionado, I would be the first to express my scepticism at the claims that Chilean Chardonnay can be great or even profound. But tasting the Las Pizarras expression from Errazuriz really blew my mind and reset my regional compass for the potential of this varietal".

 

Awarded a high 17.5 points (of 20) on Jancis Robinson's Purple Pages (www.JancisRobinson.comreviewer Ferran Centelles - in August 2019 (see blue link below).

Errazuriz, Las Pizarras Chardonnay 2018  - jancisrobinson.com Aug 2019 review

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The Errazuriz Estate was founded in 1870 when Don Maximiano Errazuriz planted his first vineyards at Panquehue in the Aconcagua Valley - 100 km north of the Chilean capital. Recognising that this valley, with its cool, rainy winters, hot, dry summers and moist Pacific Ocean breezes, was ideal for growing grapes, Don Maximiano sent for the finest clones from France and with tenacity and perseverance transformed this barren land into a world class vineyard.

Today, the tradition of quality lives on with Don Maximiano's descendant, Eduardo Chadwick. Eduardo is the fifth generation of his family to be involved in the wine business. Eduardo has overseen the modernisation of the winemaking technology at this historic Estate whilst maintaining a distinct identity for its wines. Dedicated to producing estate grown wines of superior quality, Errazuriz has built a reputation as the 'Premier Family Wine Estate of Chile'.

Errazuriz's philosophy is best expressed by Don Maximiano who said, "from the best land, the best wine." Vina Errazuriz believe in the concept of terroir and strive to produce the finest wines by controlling every stage of the winemaking process, from grape growing in the Aconcagua and Casablanca valleys, to winemaking with the most natural techniques. An emphasis is placed on the delicate handling of the wines, with the aim of producing wines with elegance and complexity.

The Errazuriz Winery was established in 1870 when the founder Don Maximiano Errazuriz first brought vines to the area. The beautiful original 1870 building still stands with the spectacular underground cellars still being used. Two brand new winery buildings were completed in 2010; one for Max Reserva wines and one for thef lagship wines. The Don Maximiano Icon Winery is an architecturally stunning masterpiece with oak fermenters and environmentally friendly ground-source heating/cooling. Sitting alongside the original 1870 building, these new developments show the importance of respecting our heritage whilst having a clear vision for the future. Both were showcased by Jancis Robinson and Hugh Johnson in the 7th Edition of The World Atlas of Wine as benchmark examples of a state-of-the-art modern winery. In October 2017, Errazuriz became Chile’s first recipient of the Robert Parker Wine Advocate Extraordinary Winery Award for Best Chilean Winery 2017.

With the Las Pizarras wines specifically (see also the superb Pinot Noir), the dream was to create unique wines that could stand out alongside world class wines, aspiring to showcase the potential of Aconcagua Costa through terroir-specific wines. The name comes from the high percentage of metamorphic rock, slate (Spanish: pizarras) found in the property. With a grand cru philosophy, years of knowledge and mapping the vineyard revealed specifics blocks (see link below) to produce the most complete and complex Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Syrah.

For more details, see the blue links below: the first regarding vintage and winemaking, and the second regarding land and terroir.

Errazuriz Las Pizarras Chardonnay 2018 - data sheet

Errazuriz Las Pizarras Chardonnay 2018 - land and vineyards

Chardonnay 100%

The 2018 vintage of Las Pizarras Chardonnay shines with its bright yellow-straw color. On the nose, it delivers notes of citrus fruits, accompanied by some floral notes framed by soft notes of marzipan and nuts. On the palate, the wine enters with freshness and deepness, followed by a delicate and complex feel. The palate is dominated by its citrusy profile, plus a hint of tropical fruits accompanied by delicate notes of toasted bread and dried fruits, all crowned by an exquisite mineral sensation, great persistence and an elegant finish.” FRANCISCO BAETTIG, TECHNICAL DIRECTOR

ABV = 13.0%. 

£55.00

Far Niente Chardonnay 2018 (1x75cl)

** THIS WINE IS BOUGHT IN TO SPECIFIC CUSTOMER ORDER - WE DO NOT HOLD FREE STOCK. ORDERS PLACED BY 9 AM EACH MONDAY WILL BE MET WITH STOCK ARRIVING WITH US ON THE SAME WEDNESDAY FOR DESPATCH (and thus should be with UK customers by the weekend). **

The 2017 vintage was awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their June 2019 panel tasting of Premium Californian Chardonnay (see blue link below).

Far Niente Chardonnay 2017 - June 2019 Decanter review

See also the techical note from the producer (click blue link below).

Far Niente Chardonnay 2018 - fiche technique

Far Niente, one of the earliest stone wineries, derives its name from the Italian phrase "Dolce Far Niente" (how sweet it is to do nothing). It was founded in 1885 and flourished until prohibition. Abandoned for over 60 years, the winery was purchased in 1979 by Gil Nickel. He started the long process of restoring it. Far Niente's quest to produce outstanding wines of distinctive character has led them to a philosophy that requires vineyard ownership. Today, they own 200 acres (3 different vineyard sites) of what many regard as some of the finest vineyard land in the Napa Valley.

Far Niente Chardonnay is a blend of superlative Napa Valley vineyards, many of which are located in a little-known area called Coombsville, a cool growing region nestled in the rolling countryside and protected by the hills east of the city of Napa. Coombsville offers the characteristic climate of Carneros, with less wind, along with deeper, well-drained gravelly loam and volcanic ash soils. The combination of these spectacular vineyards results in the subtle, tropical flavours, complex aromas and uncommon richness that we have long associated with Far Niente Chardonnay.

The 2018 season started out with dry conditions and low snowpack in January, but February and March brought heavy and much needed rains. Budbreak and flowering followed slightly later than in the previous vintages, but the moderate spring weather ensured an even set and abundant crop. Summer saw relatively mild temperatures with plenty of sunshine; the warm days were coupled with cool nights and foggy mornings. The Chardonnay harvest finally began just after ‘Labor Day’, and steadily continued for five weeks. Beautiful sunshine and moderate heat at harvest allowed the large crop to reach optimal flavour maturity with only gradual increases in sugar levels.

The grapes were brought to the winery in small bins and sorted by hand to assure the finest quality. Fermentation began in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks and 85% was racked into French oak barrels to complete fermentation in the caves and old stone cellars. The wine did not go through malolactic fermentation and was aged for 10 months on its fine lees for additional depth, complexity and texture. The maturation took place in French oak barrels (50% new, 50% used once).

This wine is 100% Chardonnay.

Aromas of citrus, melon and honeysuckle complement hints of white fig, gardenia and toasted hazelnuts on a background of mild toasted oak that adds supportive warmth and richness. A silky palate with a rich texture surrounds a sweet core of melon and citrus, with notes of white floral and toasted vanilla and spice, through to a long bright finish.

ABV = 14.5%.

£62.20

Gaunoux Meursault 2017 (1x75cl)

Gaunoux is an old Côte de Beaune family whose most famous member was Henri Gaunoux—a celebrated vigneron in the decades on either side of the second war. Upon his death in 1972 his estate was divided among his family, and his two sons consolidated the vineyard parcels into two domains: Domaine François Gaunoux in Meursault, and Domaine Michel Gaunoux in Pommard.

Henri’s grandson, Jean-Michel, went to work side by side with François in 1978. In 1990, Jean-Michel split with his father and started his own domain, Domaine Jean-Michel Gaunoux, with vineyard parcels from his mother’s family. In 1991, he put in a new, very deep and cold cellar and aging room. In 2012, after completing enology studies and working a harvest at Saint Innocent in Oregon, Jean-Michel’s son Henri joined the domain. These days, the father and son team farm nearly six hectares, or 14.5 acres, in the villages of Meursault, Pommard, Puligny-Montrachet, and Volnay.Production is just about evenly split between Pinot and Chardonnay, and Jean-Michel is equal to either variety. The distinguishing characteristic of his wines is—and I hope you appreciate this term—their regal nature. These are self-assured wines, without need of flash or pizzazz (you won’t find big extractions, high toast oak, or the like here). They know themselves and are solidly built, pure, long, very mineral, and ageworthy.

He manipulates very little in the cellar, and limits the use of new oak to about 30% for the Premier Cru red in good years (15-20% for the whites). He racks the wine out of barrel and into vats shortly after the following vintage so that his barrels never go empty and dry out. He quit lees stirring in 2004, fearing that it encouraged premature oxidation, and subsequently found that this permitted him to cut his SO2 additions in half. He does not filter the reds. In good years, Jean-Michel takes the rare step of putting aside a certain amount of a given year’s wine to age in bottle in his cellar for later release. This allows him to offer beautifully stored bottles of his wine to clients. And the thing is, he does so at near the same prices as the current release.

Gaunoux's village Meursault is an assemblage of 4 parcels: Terres Blanches (1.15 acres) and Pelles (0.5 acres) on the south side of town, giving richer fruit and elegance; and Criots (1 acre) and Malpoiriers (2 acres) on the north side, giving a leaner, more mineral wine. The average age of the vines is 45 years.

Long, cool fermentation in barrel; 15-20% of French oak barrels are new and the rest are one-year-old. Aging/elevage: racked into neutral vats after 12 months, and then bottled.

100% Chardonnay.

Well developed with ripe, tropical fruit on the nose and an enticing note of honey leading to an intense and concentrated palate with well balanced acidity and a crisp, clean, lengthy finish.

ABV = 13.0%.

£38.95

Giant Steps `Sexton Vineyard` Chardonnay 2017 (1x75cl)

The 2016 vintage was awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their December 2017 edition review of cool-climate Australian Chardonnay (Victoria and Tasmania) (see blue link below).

Giant Steps Sexton Vineyard Chardonnay 2016 - December 2017 Decanter review

The 2015 vintage was awarded 93 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their September 2017 edition review of Australian Chardonnay (see blue link below).

Giant Steps Chardonnay 2015 - Sept 2017 Decanter review

Giant Steps is a privately-owned, estate-based, Yarra Valley grower and winemaker that has forged a reputation for delivering some of Australia’s most consistent, over-performing, varietal wines. The Giant Steps Single Vineyard range is produced from the most site-expressive fruit off the best vineyards in great years. Their aim is to express in each wine the character of the site, grape and vintage, and this they achieve by meticulous work in the vineyard and minimum intervention in the winery. Head winemaker Steve Flamsteed and his team are making some of the best wines in Australia from these sites.

Located on the steep north facing slopes of the Warramate Ranges, alongside the vineyards of Yarra Yering and Coldstream Hills, the Sexton vineyard is exposed and demanding. Being well up the slopes between 130 and 210 metres, topsoil is thin and root systems have established themselves in shallow gravelly loams above a tough rocky clay base. Vigour and bunch yields are naturally low in this environment, facilitating a low intervention approach to what is otherwise hand tended viticulture. Organic vineyard management principles are being introduced with the purpose of further distinguishing the site and improving grape and wine quality.

2017 was a very good vintage for the Yarra Valley. A cool, early summer meant harvest dates were three weeks later than the previous vintage but a perfect autumn meant that crops were evenly balanced with excellent acidity and ripe flavours.

The fruit was hand picked. Upon arrival at the winery, it was lightly pressed to tank and the juice transferred to puncheons with no settling. Fermentation took place with 100% indigenous yeast in 500 litre French puncheons at 18 - 24°C. The lees were stirred twice only between May and June. The wine spent ten months in French puncheons, 20% of which were new. No malolactic fermentation took place. The wine was bottled, unfiltered, by gravity.

100% Chardonnay.

Flinty, wet slate aromas combine with notes of melon and honeysuckle on the nose. Lengthy and elegant at the same time, the palate is fuller bodied than the 2015 vinatge, with preserved lemons complementing subtle melon, and a steely character on the long finish.

ABV = 13.5%.

£28.00

Ocean Eight Verve Chardonnay 2016 (1x75cl)

Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their June 2020 edition article, Aussie Chardonnay: 20 Wines To Snap Up (see blue link below). 

Ocean Eight Verve Chardonnay 2016 - June 2020 Decanter review

Owned by the Aylward family - founders of the renowned Kooyong winery- Ocean Eight was established in 2004 in the southern and cooler side of Mornington Peninsula. In their state-of-the-art, temperature controlled, gravity fed winery, winemaker Mike Aylward produces stunning cool climate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, taking influence from the great old world wine regions of Alsace, Burgundy and Champagne. All the grapes for the Ocean Eight wines are sourced from the family’s 17 hectares of vineyard and their total production each year is just 5,000 cases.

2016 saw the warmest summer in five years in the Mornington Peninsula, with the earliest picking date in 20 years. The harvest delivered clean, healthy fruit in big bunches and with even berries; indeed this vintage produced the cleanest fruit in 10 years. The grapes for the Verve are always picked on the 'edge of ripeness' with a citrus flavour profile. Vineyard The grapes come from a 2.5 hectare block of Chardonnay in an established vineyard of 20 year old vines. The clones are a mix of P58, I10, 95 and 96. Situated at an elevation of 65 metres with a north western orientation, the vineyard has a great airflow, which minimises disease pressure as the canopy dries quickly. The soil is sandy loam which provides excellent drainage, essential nutrients for vine health and imparts a minerality to the flavour profile.

The fruit was picked to highlight the citrus spectrum, in particular grapefruit, hence the name ‘Verve’ which accurately describes the racy character of this wine. Whole bunches were chilled overnight prior to vinification in the gravity-fed winery. The grapes were whole bunched pressed and transferred by gravity to old French barriques at temperatures of 25 to 32°C. Spontaneous fermentation took place with indigenous vineyard yeasts. The wine spent 12 months in oak with full lees contact, imparting texture and complexity. The wine was gently fined and filtered prior to bottling.

100% Chardonnay.

The name Verve encapsulates its style, showing distinctive grapefruit and citrus aromas. Vibrant perfume of Granny Smith apple, honeysuckle blossom and lime zest enhanced by stone fruit flavours, long and elegant.The palate almost gives you the illusion of richness due to the intensity of the fruit, then the crisp, dry finish lingers in an everlasting finale.

ABV = 12.5%.

£26.40

Stags Leap Wine Cellars Karia Chardonnay 2018 (1x75cl)

** THIS WINE IS HELD IN NO OR LOW STOCK BUT IS QUICKLY BROUGHT IN TO ORDER. ORDERS PLACED BY 9am EACH MONDAY WILL BE WITH US FOR IMMEDIATE DESPATCH ON WEDNESDAY. NEXT STOCK WITH US 14th OCTOBER **

Awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their October 2020 article on Stag's Leap (see blue link below).

Stags Leap Wine Cellars Karia Chardonnay 2018 - October 2020 Decanter review

Considered one of the “first growths” of Napa Valley, Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars produces renowned Cabernet Sauvignon from its historic Stags Leap District estate vineyards. Founded in 1970, the winery brought international recognition to California winemaking and the Napa Valley when the 1973 SLV Cabernet Sauvignon won the now famous 1976 Paris Tasting, also known as the “Judgment of Paris.” Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars’ three estate-grown Cabernet Sauvignons - CASK 23, SLV and FAY - are among the most highly regarded and collected Cabernet Sauvignons worldwide.

The word Karia is derived from the Greek word meaning 'graceful', and this sums up the style that has been aimed for in the making of this Chardonnay. Karia comes from a tapestry of vineyards in the southern part of Napa Valley. For the 2013 offering, vineyards in the Atlas Peak District, Carneros, Coombsville (Arcadia vineyard) and Oak Knoll (Danika Ranch) contributed fruit in equal parts. The vineyards in Carneros, which are cooled in the mornings and evenings by breezes sweeping north from San Pablo Bay, contribute citrus and mineral notes to the wine. Arcadia vineyard brings perfume and delicate fruit characters while our estate vineyard at Danika Ranch provides bright, juicy apple and pear personality to the blend. The fruit was picked early in the morning to keep it cool and then was whole cluster pressed to preserve the freshness. Oak and malolactic fermentation were used in moderation to accent, rather than overwhelm, the fruit.

86% of the wine is barrel-fermented, while 14% is fermented in stainless steel. 30% of the wine goes into new French oak with eight months sur lie. 89% of the wine goes through MLF.

100% Chardonnay.

Generous and complex on the nose, which abounds with notes of lemon, orange blossom, fresh apples and toasted brioche. Mouth-filling and delicately spicy, but supremely elegant and refreshing. Try pairing this medium-bodied Chardonnay with grilled whole fish with lemons and capers, seared scallops drizzled with lemon-infused olive oil, or roast chicken.

ABV = 14.5%. 

£32.50
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