Amourette Chardonnay 2014
Like a true French Puligny-Montrachet this Amourette is focused and brilliant. This mineral-driven vintage captures energy and shows an inherent richness while the interplay of flavors and textures can only be described as utterly breathtaking.
The 2014 Amourette is a perfect replacement for our 2013 Amourette both of which are GOLD MEDAL WINNER at Sonoma Harvest Fair Wine Competition in September 2014.
Many friends have asked me to define the basic taste characteristics of my Amourette Chardonnay but it’s very hard to do. There is certainly an inviting nose and a touch of mineral culminating in a flavorful finish, but the key to Amourette is the way it seems anxious to offer more. Many Chardonnays have fruit concentration and acidity, usually going on to show toast and butter from their time in oak, but Amourette successfully melds hints of the best of these aspects whilst at the same time retaining a really high level of interest; it is somehow this tightrope of presentation and the resulting ‘tension’ that intrigues and delivers pleasure from the taste and why it continues to win gold medals on every outing.
To the eye, a beautiful bright golden straw color. The nose, a delightful, delicate floral aroma of white flowers and fresh herbs.
This leads into a palate that is really striking, with perfect pitch and poise, showing notes of ripe white fruit with its power held in check by bright acidity and balancing a complex mineral structure.
The finish is an unexpected continuation of the delicate flavors that make this wine very special. No big buttery oak here just the lingering delicacy yet with lots of energy, and a long, stylish finish.
The harvest began in mid-September, in the sunshine when we enjoy our Lobster Feast in the vineyard. Arriving in the winery the Amourette grapes were ripe, healthy and aromatic. Fermentation went off without a hitch, and the warm weather at the end of fall allowed the malolactic fermentation to finish quickly. We ended up with 866 gallons of this rare wine producing less than 340 cases.
The 2014 vintage once again produced both quality and quantity. The Amourette Estate Vineyard, now 35 years old, was harvested on September 14, perfect timing of crop maturity thanks to our canopy management practices and manually reduced crop load.
No expense is spared in making Amourette in the traditional French Montrachet style being fermented and aged in barrel. Alcoholic fermentation lasts about 6 to 8 weeks and is quickly followed by partial malolactic fermentation at an optimal cellar temperature of 62°F to fully develop its delicate flavors.
During this period the wines are lightly stirred ("bâtonnés"), taking into account their level of evolution from juice to finished wine.
Once the malolactic fermentation is achieved, the wines are racked. Then starts the maturing process, always in barrels, in cold cellars at 55°F for around 11 months.
French Oak Burgundy Style Barrels from the Allier & Vosges forests: 35% New, 35% One-use, 30% Two+ uses with an average of 5 years of use for all barrels.