The 2018 growing season started with a cool spring with significantly higher than average frost hours (a measurement of hours below 36°F), which led to a late bud break. The growing season was also unique in terms of GDD (growing degree days), with 14% fewer on average than 2017. The cooler mild conditions and lack of extreme heat spikes combined to create an extended growing season and measured pace to harvest.
Our Chardonnay was hand harvested at night, then quickly sorted and pressed in full cluster. The grapes were allowed to ferment with wild yeasts, which added layers of complexity. Post-fermentation, the wine was cooled to delay native malolactic fermentation until spring. Winemaker Michael Beaulac allows plenty of lees contact during aging and stirs routinely to enhance a creamy mouthfeel. The wine was aged in French oak for 12 months, using 60 percent new French oak barrels.