Le Cigare Blanc, Bonny Doon Vineyard
Le Cigare Blanc is the white analogue of Le Cigare Volant, our homage to the complex blended wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. This seasonal outing is based (60%) on the Roussanne variety. This mysteriously subtle grape combines stone and mineral notes within a package surprisingly full of ripe orchard fruit. Grenache blanc at 40% volume adds its own bright refreshing character, nearly merging this cuvée into the fast lane of snappiness, before the Roussanne takes charge, pulling stylishly over to the right and settling down for a seductively long ride.
Le Cigare Blanc is mostly grown on the Beeswax Vineyard in the Arroyo Grande section of Monterey County. Picked early in the morning into half ton bins, the fruit is brought to our winery in Santa Cruz for whole cluster pressing 100%. This quality methodology
enables us to moderate the pre-wine’s phenolic content allowing for a greater degree of complexity and nuance. The Roussanne and Grenache blanc lots are cool fermented separately, initially in tank then transferred to barrel to complete. Post-fermentation bâtonnage is carried out over an additional six months as the wine ages in neutral French oak barrels. By careful and regular stirring of the wine and its lees we are able to keep sulfur additions to a minimum and greatly enhance the wine’s palate and texture.
Cigare Blanc’s mouthfeel is further enhanced by the use of 25% maloactic fermentation. Our attention to the niceties of both fermentation and elevage is incredibly significant as careful monitoring is crucial to the wine’s life force, harmony and quality.