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Brander Cuvee Natalie 2012

Other White Blends from Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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    Winemaker Notes

    This perennial favorite, named after owner and winemaker Fred Brander's daughter, exhibits remarkable balance and extraordinary zip with this 2012 vintage. A beautiful floral blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris and Riesling, this shows as a very pale gold in the glass, and opens with aromas of Anjou pear, white nectarines, honeysuckle, and fresh lychee nut.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Brander

    The Brander Vineyard

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    The Brander Vineyard, Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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    The planting of the Brander Vineyard to mainly Bordeaux varietals began in 1975. In 1977, the first harvest of Sauvignon Blanc grapes were taken to a neighboring winery where Fred Brander produced a wine so distinctive it captured Santa Barbara County's first gold medal for a wine at a major wine competition (1978 Los Angeles County Fair).Since its inception, the Brander vineyard has been highly acclaimed as a top Sauvignon Blanc producer, and for many years the only Brander wine was an estate-bottled Sauvignon Blanc. Today, the winery produces an average of 8,000 cases of wine from its 43 acres of vineyard in the Santa Ynez Valley. The focus on production is Sauvignon Blanc, with one main bottling and three distinctively different reserve bottlings of that variety. A small quantity of red wines is also produced with Merlot and our Bordeaux-blend called Bouchet being the most popular.

    Santa Ynez Valley

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    Ranging from cool and foggy in the west to warm and dry in the east, the Santa Ynez Valley is a climatically diverse growing area. The most expansive AVA within the larger Santa Barbara County region, Santa Ynez is also home to a wide variety of soil types and geographical features. The appellation is further divided into four distinct sub-AVAs—Sta. Rita Hills, Ballard Canyon, Los Olivos District and Happy Canyon—each with its own defining characteristics.

    A wide selection of grapes is planted here—more than sixty different varieties, and counting. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir dominate in the chilly west, while Zinfandel, Rhône blends, and Bordeaux blends rule the arid east. Syrah is successful at both ends of the valley, with a lean and peppery, Old-World sensibility closer to the coast and lush berry fruit further inland.

    Other White Blends

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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 create complex wines with many different layers of flavors and aromas, or to create more balanced wines. For example, a variety that is soft and full-bodied may be combined with one that is lighter with naturally high 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.

    DSLD1611_12_010_2012 Item# 353480