Cakebread Chardonnay 2005 Front Label
Cakebread Chardonnay 2005 Front Label

Cakebread Chardonnay 2005

  • WS89
750ML / 0% ABV
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4.2 6 Ratings
750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The first wine produced by Cakebread Cellars was a Chardonnay from the 1973 vintage, and this varietal has become the most widely appreciated of its range. Grapes are sourced from Napa's best Chardonnay microclimates: the southernmost section of the Napa Valley, and the Carneros region, cool-climate areas recognized for the superb quality of the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir they produce. These vineyards, which Cakebread directly manages, are planted in a variety of clones which lend the wine depth and complex aromas. Because the different clones ripen at different rates in different vineyard sites, harvest may begin as early as the first of September and last until mid-October. The grapes are harvested at night or in the early hours of the morning, when the fruit is coolest. Fermentation can then begin with very little, if any, cooling.

Cakebread Cellars' Napa Valley Chardonnay is light straw in color with a glint of gold. Its aromas are reminiscent of green apples and the faint scent of apricots with a clean scent of mineral suggestive of flint. These impressions are repeated on the palate with a very slight buttery finish and a subtle hint of French oak vanillin in the background. Good depth with an ideal balance of fruit and crisp acidity lead into a fresh, silky finish.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 89
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Cakebread

Cakebread Cellars

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Cakebread Cellars, California
Cakebread Cellars Cakebread Cellars Winery Winery Image

Over 30 years ago, Jack Cakebread came to photograph the Napa Valley for a book and while there, he casually mentioned his interest in one day owning a vineyard to some family friends who had a ranch in Rutherford. When he returned home that afternoon, the phone rang and it was the family friends offering to sell their property. He headed back up to the valley that same afternoon to make his best offer, and Cakebread Cellars was born.

As the Cakebread family reflects upon the many profound changes in the wine industry over the last 33 years, such as innovative farming techniques and new methods of reaching out to consumers, they note that their key values have remained the same. Dedication to making the highest quality wines and a commitment to family has followed a continuum as their first small vineyard has grown into a thriving internationally distributed wine company.

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960s, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.

The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980s, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Napa whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those are the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth reds with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

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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 is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.

YNG231728_2005 Item# 88253

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