2013 Wolff Vineyard Chardonnay
Edna Valley, CA
Not by intention, this rendition of Chardonnay became our ode to Chablis. The region, not the jug wine! Not coincidentally, because as much as I love high-end Cote de Beaune Chardonnay i.e. White Burgundy – Meursault, Puligny, Corton Charlemagne….Over the last few years, I’ve become a huge fan of Chablis from entry level Fevre up to Raveneau. I crave the crisp, saline, and oyster shell character. If oak is used, it is not discernible. In other words - a fresh weightless, tasty Chardonnay with a finish.
I think we have come close with this wine. Harvested to achieve a finish alcohol of 13.2% with 6.5 grams of tartaric and a 3.4 pH, this offering delivers a most unique domestic Chardonnay experience – attributable to old-vine Wente clone plantings, diligence in when to harvest and most importantly - luck. Barrel fermented in neutral French Oak and bottled after 12 -1/2 months, this wine has elements of lemon curd, lime blossom with a burst of fruit and tangy acidity. I wish I could tell you this wine is repeatable annually, but those almost forty-year old vines struggle each year. We will be on the lookout.
Wolff Vineyard is located in the Edna Valley AVA near the town of San Luis Obispo. Our section of this vineyard was planted in 1980 to own-rooted Wente clone – one of the most sought-after clones for California, as old vine Wente can produce profound wines. These old gnarly vines naturally produce small clusters and low yields. The plants struggle every year and this vineyard will need replanting soon - unfortunately. In the meantime, we will seek to produce wine from this vineyard as often as we can. Soil type here is clay and clay loam.