Chardonnay 'La Carriere', Peter Michael
The 2018 growing season began with abundant winter rainfall. Spring weather was cool and blooming, while delayed a bit, took place in almost perfect conditions resulting in a generous fruit set. The vines were vigorous thanks to the winter rains. Aggressive canopy management and fruit thinning brought the crop into optimal balance. Summer temperatures were moderate with no severe heat spikes. An extended Indian summer allowed our Chardonnay to gradually reach perfect ripeness. The moderate temperatures permitted a gradual harvest, resulting in an elegant, bountiful vintage with classic flavors and excellent concentration.
La Carrière, French for ‘the quarry,’ aptly describes this vineyard’s bowl shape and its tremendously rocky soils. Situated between 1,200 and 1,700 feet above sea level on steep mountain slopes exceeding forty percent in grade, the vineyard has ideal southern and southeastern exposures. The vineyard’s shallow rocky soils provide excellent drainage, low fertility and usually the lowest yields on the estate. La Carrière, with its concentrated ‘liquid minerality,’ effectively reflects its mountainous origin.
Winemaker’s Tasting Notes
The signature of this vineyard remains its terroir-driven minerality . The nose is dominated by aromas of toasted almond, brioche, dry honey, white flowers, hazelnut and William pear. Accents of acacia, orange blossom and vanilla complete the elegant bouquet. White peach and citrus oil highlight the minerality. Magnificent concentration and elegance on the palate sculpt the structure of this wine, offering richness and intensity. While approachable now, the 2018 La Carrière will handsomely reward two years of cellaring and will continue to develop for a decade or more.
- Appellation: Knights Valley, Sonoma County
- Harvested: September 8 – October 1, 2018
- 100% naturally fermented using native yeast
- 100% barrel fermented in 100% French oak from select artisan coopers
- Barrel-aged sur lies 12 months with weekly bâtonnage
- Bottled unfined and unfiltered: February 5, 2020
- Alcohol: 14.3%
- Release Date: April 1, 2020
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