Winmaker's Notes: "We’re fortunate enough to work with Chardonnay vines in the Rheinfarm Vineyard with an average age of 35 years incuding the second oldest block of Chardonnay in California planted in 1970. The Chardonnay is situated in the coolest part of our ranch where Mother Nature funnels chilly Pacific breezes through the Petaluma Gap. Utilizing that cooling affect, we strive for balanced vines with canopies that protect the fruit as much as possible from direct sunlight to preserve the beautiful aromatic characteristics and pick early to capture the natural acidity. Each nuanced portion of the various blocks of Chardonnay offer slightly different flavor profiles which we capture by fermenting separately. We select one small portion each year to ferment in stainless steel tank to capture the brightest natural acidity and ferment the remainder (~80 percent) in French oak barrels. Used barrels in combination of once, twice, three and four times used are an extremely important part of this program to allow for oak influence without dominating the flavors."
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