Anything with Chardonnay
When I arrived in California in 2002, the start of my brand coincided with the ABC movement - Anything But Chardonnay. At that time, I was obsessed with Pinot Noir and Syrah so I didn’t mind its absence from my offerings. In 2007, however, a longing for something special brought Chardonnay into my wine portfolio and I quickly discovered its versatility. Over the last 10 years, I have realized that one can truly impose their winemaking style and philosophy to connect Chardonnay with any meal or occasion - truly a winemaker’s wine.
2016 was a great vintage for the California Central Coast, especially Santa Barbara County. Many of you have indulged in last month’s allocation and already commented on how much you enjoy drinking them in their youth. With this release, I would like to share with you that this vintage is one of the best ever showings for my white wines.
While my earlier vintages compare exceptionally well against the greatest Burgundies, my philosophy remains very clear: to make the greatest wines of California, respecting its land, climate, culture and people. My infatuation for the sunny skies, rolling hills and wholesome quality of this region greatly influence my desire to produce California wines at their very best. It is gratifying to see these wines win blind tastings in Japan and France against some of the best wines of the Old World. For example, my 2011 Chardonnay le Souvenir was rated by Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate as one of the top six Chardonnays in the world. It was an honor to have this wine receive the same top rating as Burgundy’s Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Montrachet Grand Cru, Domaine Marc Colin Montrachet Grand Cru and California Marcassin.
For the 2016 vintage, we separated the release of our red and white wines in order to provide you with the clarity to separately evaluate each wine style. I would encourage you to delve deeper into the world of white wine with this release, which features four different Chardonnays, a Sauvignon Blanc, a Malvasia Bianca, and a Rosé.
Chardonnay is sometimes pushed aside by a serious, heavy red wine, but why limit yourself to a small portion of what the wine world offers? Life is meant to have many surfaces to indulge and explore, and I encourage you to expand your palate’s desire to the versatility of white wine. All four of my 2016 Chardonnays are excellent showings of something powerful yet controlled, each with its own complexity and nuance.
Next, I would like to introduce you to my first vintage of Boogie Nights Malvasia Bianca. Memories of my recent vacation in Croatia inspired me to make a wine worthy of adventure. It’s refreshing body and exuberance reflects the hours I spent swimming in the Mediterranean’s clear blue waters, and the vibrant and floral aromatics illustrate the locale’s delicious cuisine and light-hearted lifestyle. I encourage you to take seriously this “unserious”, but high quality wine, that comes from beautiful Larner Vineyard and is produced from organically grown grapes. It was vinified in concrete egg and stainless steel and its lighter, zesty flavors will well complement Mediterranean style dishes, especially fish and seafood. Its soul, unmistakable quality and versatility is worthy of your table, and its zest will be the life of any party!
Equally fun and sophisticated, I offer you another vintage of The Manga Girl Rosé and Le Jardin Secret Sauvignon Blanc. Expressive and fruity, these wines pair well with many foods. Both are tasting better than ever with their refreshing acidity, balance and texture on the palate, especially as we head into the warmer months.
A few days ago, I hosted a European friend of mine who is visiting the United States and studying to become a master of wine. My friend was particularly interested in exploring Santa Barbara Chardonnay. After strolling through the vineyards, conversing about grapes, clones and rootstocks, we tasted all the Chardonnays that I’m offering to you now and prepared dinner. We decided on a challenge to match one single Chardonnay (le Souvenir) with three different dishes. Our first course consisted of pan fried lobster mushrooms sautéed in garlic butter sauce topped with seared foie gras. The second was grass fed prime rib, grilled with rice, cauliflower and carrots. We finished with homemade vanilla ice cream garnished with a wedge of Fuji apple and a mint leaf. Le Souvenir performed tremendously well accompanying each of the three dishes. It delivered incredible pleasure on the palate, revealing distinct layers and complexity with each dish. Anything with Chardonnay!
I leave you now with a rule I personally like to live by. Do not let standards and expectations overrule your thoughts and feelings towards wine. The greatest pleasures of wines are derived from the right food and wine matches, but truly enjoyed in the company of friends and loved ones.
Orders will begin shipping on May 1, 2018. Orders to AZ, FL, NV and TX will be placed on a weather hold until December 3, 2018. If you would like to adjust this shipment date to an earlier time please contact Cynthia Segovia at firstname.lastname@example.org or 805.878.9141 for assistance in placing your order. Note that an adult 21 and over must be available to sign for the wine upon delivery.
**This release may be combined in the same order with the few remaining Pinot Noirs we have left in stock.**
2017 "Manga Girl" Rosé of Pinot Noir $40
Medium light lipstick-pink color. Lively and vivacious fruit on the nose, with notes of strawberry jam and watermelon. Dry on the palate, with champagne-like acidity. It exhibits a unique balance of green apple zest, light spice, and a smooth raspberry finish. Rose of Pinot Noir is one of the most versatile food wines. It Pairs well with a variety of vegetarian dishes, as well as pasta, chicken, and fresh Californian cuisine. This is a great wine for celebrations like birthdays, weddings, and Thanksgiving.
2017 "Le Jardin Secret" Grimm’s Bluff, Sauvignon Blanc $55
This wine has a layered and complex nose of wet stone minerality, with nuances of guava, gooseberry, and white currants. It is pure and clean with laserbeam precision. Fully dry on the palate, with medium body and long complex flavors. Finishing with tantalizing acidity. Great as an aperitif, and also pairs well with vegan, vegetarian, and ethnic cuisines. Made with Biodynamic grapes.
2016 "Boogie Nights" Larner Vineyard, Malvasia Bianca $55
This wine has an exuberant and perfumed nose with nuances of citrus, orange blossom, white spring flowers and subtle notes of acacia and jasmine. The palate is surprisingly dry, quite complex, zesty and refreshing. The wine has good length, it is very well balanced. Finishing with just a touch of minerality and refreshing acid. Malvasia Bianca is made to be consumed early in its youthful exuberance; however, it can drink wonderfully over the next 2 to 3 years. Great as an aperitif or party wine, hence the name “Boogie Nights.” It is also very versatile with food matches. Our favorites include grilled seafood, sushi, and exotic dishes like Thai or Indian. Not to be missed…comes from organically grown grapes. This wine is sold exclusively through the mailing list with the exception of the first few cases sent to the world famous restaurant, French Laundry.
2016 "Belle de Jour" Duvarita Vineyard, Chardonnay $70
Very sleek and elegant chardonnay from a biodynamic vineyard located just outside the Santa Rita Hills AVA, on the ocean side. It is dry and complex, with wet stone and seabreeze-like mineral notes on the nose. Medium bodied, long in the mouth, clean and very well balanced on the palate, finishing with lemon acidity and a hint of butterscotch. It is lively enough to be an aperitif; however, it will greatly compliment seafood like shrimp, scallop, or pair well with traditional French cuisine.
2016 "Le Souvenir" Sierra Madre Vineyard, Chardonnay $75
This wine posses a powerful and exuberant nose of light butterscotch toffee, and grilled toast with nuances of vanilla, new French oak, and lemon curd. It is dry, yet plenty rich in its taste, with medium plus body, voluptuous and round texture, and nuances of minerals. The seamless integration of new French oak provides plenty of structure, and leads into a gracefully dry finish, inviting you to take another sip. It will drink great on its own with a great conversation or while reading your favorite novel. One of our favorite dishes to pair is a creamy Lobster risotto in light saffron spice.
2016 "East of Eden" Pisoni Vineyard, Chardonnay $80
Powerful yet controlled nose, with notes of lemon drop enveloped in Crème brûlée and brioche aromas, California meets Burgundy. The body is long and powerful with marine-influenced salinity and a fresh boisterous finish. This wine has a larger-than-life personality, much like the man growing the grapes, Gary Pisoni. This wine will pair well with lighter dishes of seafood or chicken, but also has the potential to compliment a steak.
2016 "KOKORO" Sierra Madre Vineyard, Chardonnay $90 **VERY LIMITED SUPPLY**
Kokoro, meaning “the vibration coming from the heart,” is our exclusive blend we only make in special vintages.This is a fully blown classic grand cru like wine. On the nose, it is elegantly complex and perfumed with layers of white currant, lemon drop and honeysuckle, with nuances of flint and toast. On the palate, it is a true thoroughbred. Dry yet elegant with plenty of complexity that unveils itself with each sip from the glass. It is a wine of seduction, with gentle silky texture, sustained by powerful structure. Finishes with a diamond like acidity with a hint of spice and hazelnut. Classic, delicious and decadent, just like a French wine. Although vinifed and aged in 100% new French Oak, it displays subtle and refined nuances of wood and vanilla. This reserve blend has limited availability. Great match for classic French or California cuisine. Try it with pan fried spring trout with butter, lemon, and toasted almonds.
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