The 2015 growing season in the Napa Valley was a beautiful one marked by pleasant weather with no real issues from heat spikes or rain. A dry winter followed by a dry and early spring meant an early bud break. Weather was warm throughout late spring and summer which allowed for great development in the grapes. Harvest began in August, and the overall quality and depth of flavor of the fruit was outstanding for the vintage. The only downside of the season was the light crop load due to continued drought conditions. Grapes for the 2015 Private Reserve Chardonnay were harvested between August 28th and September 11th.
"A dense and beautiful chardonnay with the focus and presence you expect in a top white from Napa. Full body, yet polished and formed with beautiful ripe fruit, lemon and mineral character. Hints of mineral, toasted oak and caramel. Drink or age. One for the cellar." - James Suckling
“Beautifully crafted, rich and layered, with tiers of smoky oak, buttery fig and tangerine, showing touches of fig and melon. Adds up to a delightfully lingering aftertaste. Drink now through 2020.”
“The 2015 Chardonnay Private Reserve presents all of the notes that are so typical of this wine. Butter, tropical fruit, vanillin and sweet French oak are all pushed forward. Ample, creamy and expressive, the 2015 is a prototypical California barrel fermented Chardonnay.”
Each Chardonnay lot was kept separate throughout the aging process. After sending the fruit directly to press, the juice is fermented in French oak barrels (66 percent new) to enhance the natural richness in the wine. Weekly lees stirring enhanced the toasty notes and integrated the oak flavors for an overall balance. All of the wine was put through malolactic fermentation to encourage a lush creaminess. After nine months aging, the most expressive lots are chosen and blended to create a richly layered wine with aromas of crème brûlée and rich citrus and fruit flavors.