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Big Basin Coastview Vineyard Chardonnay 2014

Chardonnay from Mt. Harlan, Central Coast, California
  • RP90
13.5% ABV
  • WE94
  • RP92
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13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Relative to the 2013 vintage, the 2014 possesses lifted floral aromatics with more verve and minerality. The percentage of new French oak was reduced slightly (only 2 out of 9 barrels) which enhances the transparency to the expressive Coastview fruit. The resulting wine is fully integrated with a concentration on the mid palate that is impressive.

Pair this wine with seafood, white meats with citrus glazes, or simply enjoyed on a nice afternoon.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Juicy and lively, with racy acidity and medium-bodied richness, the 2014 Chardonnay Coastview Vineyard is 100% Chardonnay that spent 11 months in 22% new French oak. Giving up plenty of orchard fruits, hints of toasted nuts, buttered citrus and brioche, it benefits from a decant and will drink nicely for 4-5 years, if not longer. This is a classy Chardonnay that's made in a more lean, fresh style.
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Big Basin

Big Basin

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Big Basin, Mt. Harlan, Central Coast, California
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Big Basin Vineyards was founded in 1998 on an historic site in the Santa Cruz Mountains next to Big Basin Redwoods State Park. The old ranch property was first settled in the late 1800s. Wine grape cultivation had been started by French immigrants by the early 1900s and continued until 1965 when the property was sold by Justin Lacau, who had named the property "Frenchy's Ranch", to a timber company. By the 1990s, all that remained of the vineyards were redwood stakes and scattered vines hidden by brush and poison oak bushes.

We believe in a style of winemaking that allows the fullest expression of the site and the particular vintage. To this end, we spend long hours in our vineyard to insure that the grapes we grow are of the best quality possible. We believe in and employ sustainable and organic farming practices. The steep hillsides, cooling ocean breezes and fog, and fractured mudstone soils promote the development of color and complex flavors. By keeping the yields very low and harvesting small sections of the vineyard at perfect ripeness, we strive to achieve the most important part of winemaking - great fruit. The winemaking then becomes the art of gently extracting what the fruit has to offer. We carefully destem the fruit into small (one ton) open top fermenters where we cold soak the whole berries. We rely primarily on indigenous yeast fermentations which helps promote greater complexity and depth in the finished wine.

Big Basin Vineyards specializes in Syrah while also making a Pinot Noir and Rose of Syrah.

Mt. Harlan

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At elevations reaching well over 2,000 feet, the Mt. Harlan AVA in the Gabilan Range is an anomaly among its surrounding Central Coast appellations. Recognizing the splendor of the area and its ideal limestone-rich soils, Josh Jensen chose Mt. Harlan as the home of his Calera Wine Company in the 1970s. Awarded his own AVA in 1990, Calera is the only commercial winery in the appellation.

Chardonnay

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

In the Glass

When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.

Perfect Pairings

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based sauces.

Sommelier Secret

Since the 1990s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has begun to swing in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.

ALWBGCVCHMC14_2014 Item# 192370