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Wild Horse Unbridled Chardonnay 2007

Chardonnay from Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
    14.2% ABV
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    14.2% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    The Chardonnay grapes were sourced from three blocks within the highly acclaimed Bien Nacido Vineyard in the southeastern corner of the Santa Maria Valley. The grapes were 100% hand harvested and delivered via refrigerated truck to Wild Horse Winery in the morning. Upon delivery to the winery, the grapes were pressed whole cluster using a bladder press. Hard press was separated from free run and processed separately. Primary fermentation was initiated in a stainless steel tank followed by immediate transfer to a mix of French, Hungarian, and American barrels. Upon completion of primary fermentation, barrels were topped and inoculated with malolactic bacteria. The wine and lees were stirred weekly for three months to enhance mouth feel and provide self fining. This Unbridled Chardonnay was aged in 35% new oak for 10 months.

    Our 2007 Unbridled Chardonnay provides incredible depth and richness while also maintaining the elegant characteristic of old world wines. The ocean influence in the Santa Maria Valley provides the distinctiveness of citrus, pear, and apple coupled with bright acidity. The 100% malolactic fermentation naturally lowers the inherent acidity in the wine contributing to a complex and fulfilling mid-palate richness. This exquisite Chardonnay demonstrates extremely bright citrus and apple aromas mixed with subtle nutty caramel from the French Oak followed by a graceful, well balanced finish. This wine is well paired with seared Ahi and grilled rolled chicken tacos with corn cake.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Wild Horse

    Wild Horse

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    Wild Horse, Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
    Image of winery
    Located south of Paso Robles in Templeton, California, Wild Horse Winery was founded in 1983 by Ken Volk. Wild Horse Winery was named for the wild mustangs that roamed the hills east of the vineyard estate. These mavericks suggest a free, noble spirit and are the ideal symbol for the Wild Horse Winery commitment to spirited winemaking. The vineyard and winery location was selected for its low vigor soils, proven ground water table, proximity to Estero Bay and rural atmosphere. Wild Horse Winery creates compelling wines from 16 diverse appellations and more than 40 vineyards from the Central Coast. Wild Horse Winery is committed to sustainable viticultural and business practices and creating fine wines that express the best of the region’s diversity. "Live Naturally, Enjoy Wildly" reflects the attitude and personalities of the people who have been creating these wines for over 25 years.

    Santa Maria Valley

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    A lesser-known but elite AVA within the larger Santa Barbara district, the Santa Maria Valley AVA runs precisely east to west starting near the coast, allowing Pacific Ocean air to funnel through and cool the vineyards. This allows grapes to ripen evenly and achieve their full potential by harvest time. Combined with minimal rainfall, consistent warm sunshine, and well-drained soils, this creates an ideal environment for grape growing.

    Many of the wineries here are small and highly respected, having established a reputation in the 1970s and 80s for producing excellent Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. More recently, Syrah has proven quite successful in the region as well. Many vineyards here are owned by growers who sell their grapes to wineries, so it is common to see the same vineyard name on bottle from different wineries. Bien Nacido is perhaps the best-known and most prestigious.

    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’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

    In the Glass

    When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.

    Perfect Pairings

    Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based 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. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.

    PIN222270_2007 Item# 100105