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Chamisal Vineyards Stainless Chardonnay 2011

Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
  • WE89
13.5% ABV
  • WW89
  • WW90
  • WE89
  • WE90
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3.9 7 Ratings
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3.9 7 Ratings
13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This wine exhibits classic varietal characteristics with aromas of ripe pineapple, fresh Gala apples, pear and candied lemon. The palate has a weight that belies its unoaked status with a rich entry of fresh citrus fruit that leads into secondary aromas of fig and mineral. Finishing clean and crisp with lingering acidity, the wine is fresh and vivacious, with a dense mid-palate. This vintage proves that with the right grapes and winemaking, Chardonnay does not need oak or malolactic fermentation to shine.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 89
Wine Enthusiast
The lime, kiwi, orange and lemon fruit flavors are so delicious, you won't miss the oak accents at all. Its bright, vital acidity makes it shine like polished silver. This is a very good food wine at a reasonable price.
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Chamisal Vineyards

Chamisal Vineyards

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Chamisal Vineyards, Central Coast, California
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The first vineyard planted in the Edna Valley appellation in 1973, Chamisal nestles five miles inland against the Santa Lucia Mountains, half way between San Francisco and Los Angeles, on the rugged California Coast. Part of an original Spanish land grant, this historic 80-acre property- formerly operating under the name of Domaine Alfred- is planted mostly to Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, with a few acres of Syrah, Grenache, and Pinot Gris. The vines thrive in the dry rocky terrain, as does the fragrant Chamise, a native white-flowered shrub that inspired the name of the property. The Edna Valley appellation, with its unique geography, possesses a near perfect combination of soil type and climate for wine grapes. With the cooling Pacific Ocean nearby, the long temperate growing season extends the amount of time a grape stays on the vine to develop its flavors. This hang time paired with the calcerous, clay-rich soil on the property produce fruit with exceptional intensity and complex flavors, often showing a distinctive character that some fondly call "Chamisal Spice."

Central Coast

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The largest and perhaps most varied of California’s wine-growing regions, the Central Coast produces a good majority of the state's wine. This vast district stretches from San Francisco all the way to Santa Barbara along the coast, and reaches inland nearly all the way to the Central Valley.

Encompassing an extremely diverse array of climates, soil types and wine styles, it contains many smaller sub-AVAs, including San Francisco Bay, Monterey, the Santa Cruz Mountains, Paso Robles, Edna Valley, Santa Ynez Valley and Santa Maria Valley.

While the region could probably support almost any major grape varietiy, it is famous for a few. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel are among the major ones. The Central Coast is home to many of the state's small, artisanal wineries crafting unique, high-quality wines, as well as larger producers also making exceptional wines.

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 is grown and how it is made. While practically every country in the wine producing world grows it, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. As far as cellar potential, white Burgundy rivals the world’s other age-worthy whites like Riesling or botrytized Semillon. California is Chardonnay’s second most important home, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia and South America are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

In the Glass

When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay flavors tend towards grapefruit, lemon zest, green apple, celery leaf and wet flint, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of melon, peach and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut and spice, while malolactic fermentation imparts a soft and creamy texture.

Perfect Pairings

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with flaky white fish with herbs, scallops, turkey breast and soft cheeses. Richer Chardonnays marry well with lobster, crab, salmon, roasted chicken and creamy 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. In Burgundy, the subregion of Chablis, while typically employing the use of older oak barrels, produces a similar bright and acid-driven style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy its lighter style.

RWC462803_2011 Item# 116954