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Santa Barbara County experienced a very mild growing season in 2014 and below average rainfall for the third year in a row. An early budbreak led to an early harvest with near perfect conditions for ripening. Overall yields were good and quality was excellent.
The Garey Vineyard lies in the heart of the Santa Maria Valley on a bench above the small town of Garey. The terroir is one of gently rolling slopes with sandy loam soils. The coastal fog influence and the cool afternoon breezes are the perfect climate for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The vineyard was planted in 1998 by the Robert Mondavi Winery and is also SIP (sustainability in practice) certified.
Chardonnay clusters were hand-picked into half-ton bins and gently pressed in a tank press. The juice was cold settled for 36 hours, then racked off the lees, inoculated with yeast and immediately transferred to French oak barrels for fermentation. A third of the barrels were new French oak, a third were one-year-old barrels, and a third were two-year-old barrels. After the primary fermentation was complete, the barrels were topped and moved to a 65-degree cellar to undergo malo-lactic fermentation, during which time they were stirred every 10 days. The wine remained in barrel until it was racked to tank and filtered once before bottling.
Aromas of apricot, ripe pineapple and cinnamon stick are accented by hints of butterscotch, truffle and subtle oak. The wine is beautifully balanced with crisp acidity, a rich mid-palate and lingering finish. This Chardonnay will gain even more complexity with additional bottle age.
277 cases produced Alcohol 14.4%