More than a decade ago, it was clear that the future potential for Chardonnay in Oregon would lie in newly available clones from Burgundy-the 'Dijon' clones. As soon as these were available in commercial quantities, I contracted with the growers of Seven Springs (now called Anden) Vineyard to replace all of our California clones with the newer plantings. Production began 1998 and as the vines get older, the resulting wines improve.
The Seven Springs Dijon clone Chardonnays have a Puligny-like character: sweet fruit and spice with great length. The Freedom Hill Dijon clone Chardonnays are more Mersault-like, darker fruit with a stony minerality and rich textures in the mouth.
Anden Chardonnay is both fruit and texture driven. For me, great Chardonnay must have lovely fruit, acidity, viscosity, and complexity of flavor. The wood must be in balance and act to compliment the wine, not be "catnip for humans". When Chardonnay is truly layered and in balance, it is very versatile to eat with, and fun to drink. I fully agree that most Chardonnays are mono-chromatic and out of balance. This wine is very layered and has an very long finish.
2006 was a vintage that produced wines with an added dimension of concentration. The end of September was warmer and sunnier than normal for Oregon. This coincided with the final ripening phase resulting in an extra level ripeness and intensity in the fruit.
Carmelized pear and ripe citrus aromas are followed by ripe pear and with hints of ginger. This Chardonnay has bright acidity, rich textures throughout the palate and loads of sweet fruit into the finish. The oak component is completely integrated, adding fullness to the texture and length to the finish.
Try Anden Chardonnay with grilled chicken, tuna, swordfish, lobster (a classic), or even foods as flavorful as duck breast. For reasons that I can not explain, the Chardonnays from this site are fantastic with Asparagus. Usually the bane of wine, the combination enhances the fruit and spice notes in the Anden Chardonnay. Try it and let me know what you think.
Mark Vlossak, winemaker