Pale bright yellow. Pure aromas of musky nectarine, grapefruit and pineapple. Boasts good thickness and richness for a chardonnay in this price range; the dominant characteristic is lively stone fruit flavors.
Beringer's Napa Valley Chardonnay is a vibrant expression of this beautiful varietal and the depth and complexity of flavors it can exhibit. Winemaker Laurie Hook chooses complementary lots from AVAs in the cool southern end of the valley to craft a wine that is the quintessential expression of Napa Valley terroir.
VINTAGE & VINEYARDS The 2011 vintage began with a wet winter and cool spring that delayed bloom and reduced fruit set, resulting in lower yields in many parts of the Napa Valley. Cool temperatures delayed ripening by several weeks, a timetable that continued through the cooler-than-usual summer season. Few high heat events occurred at any point in 2011, and growers managed more open vine canopies to ensure sunlight, warmth and good air circulation around the grape clusters. The grapes for this wine were picked over a several week period in September and October 2011 as each vineyard block arrived at full maturity. Beringer's Chardonnay vineyards span several sub-appellations in southern Napa Valley, where fog from the San Pablo Bay works its way north most afternoons during the growing season, cooling the vineyards and allowing for a longer maturation period. These southern vineyards produce Chardonnays with fine fruit flavors and crisp natural acidity.
WINEMAKING The grapes for this wine were picked, quickly brought to the winery and sent directly to press with no crushing. Winemaker Laurie Hook fermented and aged 42% of the juice in small French oak barrels (6% new) for eight months. The remainder fermented and aged in small stainless steel tanks. Laurie chose to put 60% of the wine through malolactic fermentation to balance the wine's bright fruit and acidity with a lush, creamy mouthfeel.