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Morlet Ma Princesse Chardonnay 2013

  • RP98
750ML / 0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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RP 98
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2013 Chardonnay Ma Princesse, which comes from the Goldridge soils that run through the Russian River and parts of the Sonoma Coast area, has plenty of white peach, poached pears, brioche, and crushed rock as well as quince. It is stunningly steely, rich, and full-bodied, coming from some of the older vines that Luc Morlet utilizes. The wet stone notes are a clear indication of minerality.
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Morlet

Morlet

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Morlet, California
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Luc Morlet represents the fifth-generation of a French winemaking family. Growing up in Avenay-Val d’Or, he spent all his spare time working on his family’s estate. His university studies of viticulture and winemaking were put into practice during years of work in vineyards and wineries in Burgundy, Bordeaux, and the south of France.

When Luc left France in 1996 to join his wife Jodie in her native California, his goal was to adapt the old world principles he knew so well to his new home. The Morlet style results in wines which are harmonious in their intensity, richness, complexity and refinement. Morlet wines clearly display personality, seamless character and graceful ageing capability.

In 2006, Luc and his wife Jodie began crafting wines, in limited quantities, from unique vineyards of Napa Valley and Sonoma County, under the Morlet Family Vineyards label. In 2010, the couple restored a pre-Prohibition winery located in the beautiful St. Helena appellation, as their family’s winery. With over 20 vintages under his belt, and with his own zest for innovation, Luc uses century old principles and classic Burgundy and Bordeaux methods adapted to California’s natural conditions. Passionate for both the expression of terroir, as well as for the continuous pursuit of ultimate quality, Luc calls his winemaking philosophy ‘neo-classic laissez-faire without compromise.’

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A standout region for its decidedly Californian take on Burgundian varieties, the Russian River Valley is named for the eponymous river that flows through it. While there are warm pockets of the AVA, it is mostly a cool-climate growing region thanks to breezes and fog from the nearby Pacific Ocean.

Chardonnay and Pinot Noir reign supreme in Russian River, with the best examples demonstrating a unique combination of richness and restraint. The cool weather makes Russian River an ideal AVA for sparkling wine production, utilizing the aforementioned varieties. Zinfandel also performs exceptionally well here. Within the Russian River Valley lie the smaller appellations of Chalk Hill and Green Valley. The former, farther from the ocean, is relatively warm, with a focus on red and white Bordeaux varieties. The latter is the coolest, foggiest parcel of the Russian River Valley and is responsible for outstanding Pinot Noir and 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.

Tasting Notes for Chardonnay

Chardonnay is a dry, white wine. When Chardonnay grapes are planted on cool sites, the resulting wine's 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 Food Pairings for Chardonnay

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 Secrets for Chardonnay

Since the 1980s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has swung in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a similar bright and acid-driven style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy this lighter style.

WER170619_2013 Item# 170619

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