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Flat front label of wine

Bonterra Organically Grown Chardonnay 2003

Chardonnay from California
  • WE90
0% ABV
  • WE90
  • WW90
  • WS87
  • WE89
  • WE87
  • WE90
  • WE90
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Winemaker Notes

OBSERVATIONS ON THE 2003 VINTAGE
Strange, weird and wonderful capture the roller coaster of the 2003 growing season. It started early, stayed late, and along the way brought upside down weather patterns that found days warm when they should be cool, and cool when they should be warm. Bud break for Chardonnay began to creep out in the warmest hillsides in February following an exceptionally mild winter. We had rain and cold in April, warm May days, showers in June and thunderstorms in July. Go figure. While we worried about rain during harvest, we found instead a beautiful Indian Summer that let grapes hang and develop full flavors, with higher acids that lead to this vintage having a bright, crisp showing that should be very pleasing. Flavors were even more concentrated as most vineyards found yields for Chardonnay 20-30% below average, allowing vines to concentrate energy in the fruit. Judicious shoot thinning and the careful eye that comes with organic farming led, in the end, to one of the most memorable vintages of the new century so far.

TASTING NOTES FROM WINEMAKER ROBERT BLUE
Our style continues to evolve toward a more international benchmark, with fruit forward expressions characterized by a lighter touch of oak. It's new style Chardonnay, which captures the best of the vintage. Classic Mendocino aromas of crisp green apples are followed with hints of toasty oak spice. The Dijon clone offers up definitive baked apple notes, with a touch of vanilla. Rounding out first impressions are lemony citrus tones that add complexity and brightness to the wine. Once in the mouth, you'll find this Chardonnay to be well balanced, with the higher acids predominant in this vintage providing a solid backbone. A creamy mid-palate gives way to a slightly caramelized flavor leading to an extended, lingering, bright fruit finish. It's a multi-dimensional wine made more flavorful by the wonderful organic fruit we're privileged to farm.

THE BONTERRA PHILOSOPHY
We honor the land by farming organically, creating rich soils that provide healthy vines the opportunity to deliver wonderfully flavorful fruit. With every sip of Bonterra wine, you can taste our natural commitment. There's no other way to fully capture the expression of our Mendocino terroir.
David Koball, Vineyard Manager

Critical Acclaim

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WE 90
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Bonterra

Bonterra

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Bonterra, California
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Bonterra wines are a natural expression of the unique climate and soil of the Mendocino coast. The name "Bonterra" means good earth. All of their wines are nurtured from organically grown grapes. Bonterra relishes the re-discovery of age-old traditions of viticulture, working in harmony with Nature, to create wines with pure, concentrated flavors.

THE BONTERRA PHILOSOPHY
We honor the land by farming organically, creating rich soils that provide healthy vines the opportunity to deliver wonderfully flavorful fruit. With every sip of Bonterra wine, you can taste our natural commitment. There's no other way to fully capture the expression of our Mendocino terroir.
David Koball, Vineyard Manager

California

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Responsible for the vast majority of American wine production, if California were a country, it would be the world’s fourth largest wine-producing nation. The state’s diverse terrain and microclimates allow for an incredibly wide-ranging selection of wine styles, and unlike tradition-bound Europe, experimentation is more than welcome here. Wineries range from boutique to massive corporations, and price and quality are equally varied—plenty of inexpensive bulk wine is made in the Central Coast area, while Napa is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and expensive “cult” wines.

Just about every style of wine you can imagine is made in California, from bone dry to unctuously sweet, still to sparkling, light and fresh to rich and full-bodied. Each AVA and sub-AVA has its own distinct personality. In the Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and other Bordeaux varieties dominate, as well as Sauvignon Blanc. Sonoma County is best known for Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel. The Central Coast has carved out a niche with Rhône blends based on Grenache and Syrah, while Mendocino has found success with Alsatian varieties such as Riesling and Gewürztraminer. With all the diversity that California has to offer, it is certain that any wine lover will find something to get excited about.

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.

FED41234_2003 Item# 78370