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TATE Spring Street Chardonnay 2015

Chardonnay from St. Helena, Napa Valley, California
  • RP90
14.3% ABV
  • RP90
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14.3% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Early in the morning this fruit was gently guided to the press, then whole-cluster pressed. The wine is then directly put into barrel to ferment, maintaining heavy lees, with only two of the ten barrels being new. The lees were stirred weekly. Each barrel is allowed to go through partial malo-lactic; each barrel’s malo conversion is stopped individually when the wine is balanced. In 2015 we allowed for 78% of the malic acid to convert to lactic. After 11 months, the wine was racked off the heavy sediment and fined lightly with isinglass.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Tate’s 2015 Chardonnay Spring Street is a sleeper selection that sells for a song. It is a beautifully balanced Chardonnay with notes of honeysuckle, citrus blossom, apple butter and flowers. Its beautiful texture, terrific purity and discreet use of wood all make for an outstanding bottle of Chardonnay that can be drunk now or cellared for another 3-4 years.
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TATE
TATE, St. Helena, Napa Valley, California
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David Tate, a native of British Columbia, Canada, is the Proprietor and Winemaker of TATE. For nearly 20 years, he has worked all over the world in many facets of premium wine production. As well as hand-crafting TATE wines, David is the winemaker and manager for one of the most renowned boutique wineries in the Napa Valley, Barnett Vineyards, where he has produced multiple vintages of critically acclaimed wines.

Prior to his work with Barnett, David was the assistant winemaker at Ridge Vineyards for five years atop Montebello in the Santa Cruz Mountains; his years with Ridge laid the groundwork for David's commitment to quality and understanding of what it takes to produce premium, world-class wine with a sense of place. In addition, David has worked in the Barossa Valley, Australia; Provence, France; Canterbury, New Zealand and has traveled to every fine wine region in the world. David graduated from Brock University in 2002, with an Honors Degree in Enology and Viticulture. David's research work has been published and he is an advocate for wine education, helping to teach portions of the Wine and Spirits Education trust in his free time.

TATE produces small-lot wines from micro-vineyards dotted along the valley floor and hillsides of the Napa Valley.

St. Helena

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St. Helena is in the heart of the Napa Valley, nestled between Calistoga to its north and Rutherford on its southern border. On its western side, the Mayacamas Mountains guard it from the cooling effects of the Pacific Ocean; to its east stand the Vaca Mountains. In conjunction, these mountain ranges serve to lock in summer daytime heat. But in the evening, cool air from the San Pablo Bay funnels uo through the valley, creating very chilly nights. It isn’t uncommon for temperatures to drop 50 degrees, a shift that promotes the development of ideal ripeness and acidity balance in the grapes.

St. Helena contains a plethora of different soil types in a small area, which have been enhanced over centuries by rain runoff from both mountain ranges. Its vineyards cover a variety of terrain, spreading across the bucolic valley floor and its benchlands.

These ideal topographic and climatic growing conditions easily caught the attention of early winemaking pioneers. In fact, St. Helena is the birthplace of Napa Valley’s commercial wine industry. Dr. Crane founded his cellar in 1859, David Fulton in 1860 and Charles Krug in 1861.

Today there are no less than 400 separate vineyards planted within the 12,000 acres that make up the St. Helena appellation.

Revered most for its red wines based on Bordeaux varieties, the St. Helena appellation is also a source of superior Syrah, Zinfandel and Sauvignon blanc.

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.

WWH143674_2015 Item# 175358