What makes this Chardonnay different from the wine we label as Première Reserve
? First, the Reserve
was produced from 100% Philo-grown Chardonnay whereas 28% of this Mendocino
bottling was produced from grapes grown in Potter Valley. Potter Valley's climate is warmer with a shorter grape-growing season than Philo resulting in a flavor profile that tends to suggest red apple and melon rather than Philo's poached pear and citrus flavors. Second, all the wine for the Reserve
underwent a malolactic fermentation while only 25% of this bottling did. Third, 25% of the Reserve
was aged in new barrels, adding a toasty element, whereas all the wines in the Mendocino
were aged in seasoned barrels and puncheons. This bottling sports a wider range of Chardonnay's fruit flavors with a decreased emphasis on flavors derived from the French oak barrels.
Deborah washing a Chardonnay barrel, 1979. We've been making Chardonnay at Navarro for a long time!