Au Bon Climat Hildegard Estate White Blend 2013 Front Label
Au Bon Climat Hildegard Estate White Blend 2013 Front LabelAu Bon Climat Hildegard Estate White Blend 2013 Front Bottle ShotAu Bon Climat Hildegard Estate White Blend 2013 Back Bottle Shot

Au Bon Climat Hildegard Estate White Blend 2013

  • WW95
  • RP90
750ML / 13.5% ABV
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750ML / 13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Named after an Empress, this exquisite blend of Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, and Aligote is barrel fermented and aged in all new French oak. Mouth-coating richness with lovely vanillin and hazelnuts nuances.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 95
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
One of California's top white wines, the ultra-rich and exquisitely balanced 2013 Au Bon Climat Hildegard Estate Bottled offers ripe core fruits, a tang of citrus, and an accent of spicy oak. The wine's richness makes it an exceptional match with shellfish in a cream sauce. (Tasted: May 24, 2017, San Francisco, CA)
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Giving up more citrus, caramelized fruits, brioche and sappy flowers, the 2013 Hildegard Proprietary White (50% Pinot Gris, 40% Pinot Blanc and 10% Aligote) has bright acidity, medium-body and an impeccably balanced profile that makes it a joy to drink. It has a kiss of oak on the finish and should drink nicely for at least a year or two.
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Au Bon Climat

Au Bon Climat

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Au Bon Climat, California
Au Bon Climat Au Bon Climat Tasting Room Winery Image

In 1982, Clendenen decided, along with Adam Tolmach, to start a winery dedicated to Burgundian varietals in leased quarters. Adam left in 1990 to pursue his own efforts leaving Jim solo at the helm. Through careful re-investment from its own production, Au Bon Climat (which means "a well exposed vineyard") has grown to over 50,000 cases annually.

Au Bon Climat sources fruit from several of the most highly regarded vineyards in the Central Coast. These include Clendenen’s own Le Bon Climat Vineyard and estate plantings at the legendary Bien Nacido Vineyard – both in Santa Maria Valley, along with Sanford & Benedict Vineyard in Sta. Rita Hills, Los Alamos Vineyard (Santa Barbara County), and San Luis Obispo County's Talley Vineyard.

The winery has cultivated an international reputation for its Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris. Jim Clendenen, the “Mind Behind” Au Bon Climat, is recognized worldwide for his classically styled wines. In addition to his Burgundian-focused Au Bon Climat wines, Jim also established another brand, Clendenen Family Vineyards. This project of passion allows him to make artisan, small lots of distinctive wines from a wider spectrum of varieties in styles conducive to small lots. He has received high acclaim for Italian varietals particularly his Nebbiolo that has a five year aging regimen in barrel.

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Santa Maria Valley Wine

Central Coast, California

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A lesser-known but elite AVA within the larger Santa Barbara district, the Santa Maria Valley AVA runs precisely west to east starting near the coast. The valley funnels cool, Pacific Ocean air to the vineyards more inland, allowing grapes a longer hang time to ripen evenly and achieve their full potential by harvest time. Combined with minimal rainfall, consistent warm sunshine, and well-drained soils, it is an ideal environment for grape growing.

Many of the wineries here are small and highly respected, having established a reputation in the 1970s and 80s for producing excellent Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. More recently, Syrah has also proven quite successful in the region. Many vineyards are owned by growers who sell their grapes to other wineries, so it is common to see the same vineyard name on bottlings from different wineries. Bien Nacido Vineyard is perhaps the best-known and most prestigious.

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With hundreds of white grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a variety that creates a soft and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is more fragrant and naturally high in acidity. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

WWH141335_2013 Item# 157974

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