The 2016 Chardonnay is a blend of estate fruit and other Illinois Valley growers we source from (30% Gerber Vineyard, 20% Maple Vineyard, 50% Villa Novia Vineyard). The fruit was hand-harvested, whole cluster pressed, and 70% of it was barrel-fermented. Once fermentation is complete, the wine is aged sur lie for 10 months in French oak barrels (10% once filled) and stirred every two weeks.
Ligt gold in appearance, our 2016 Chardonnay has aromas of stone fruit, yellow apple skins, and toasted almonds. The palate is bright with notes of peach nectar, pith, lemongrass with a slight toast like finish.
Average brix at harvest: 23.8
Analysis at bottling: 3.37 pH, 6.2 g/L TA, 14.0% alcohol
956 cases bottled 6/08/2017
ABOUT OUR CHARDONNAY
Foris has been producing Chardonnay in the Illinois Valley for over twenty five years. During that time, we have learned much about what works best in our unique alpine climate as far as clonal selection, viticulture and vinification techniques.
Chardonnay offers winemakers a wide range of stylistic options and is very reflective of the winemaker’s influence, so we have put a lot of thought and experimentation into developing a style that mirrors the natural environment of our vineyards. We have found the increased texture, body and flavor that barrel fermentation gives very pleasing characteristics. However, we have never been fond of overtly oaky wines so we avoid new barrels altogether and instead use 10% once filled French oak barrels each year. This level brings just a touch of vanilla and toasty characteristics into the wine without obscuring the purity of our alpine fruit. The next important choice involves malo-lactic fermentation, specifically whether to allow it or not. We prefer the crisp feel and bright fruit that we get by preventing this secondary fermentation. We also avoid the buttery aromas and flavors that are a by-product of malo-lactic fermentation, again, keeping the focus on purity of fruit attributes. Keeping the wine on its yeast lees while aging adds textural and aromatic richness and complexity while also enhancing freshness and longevity.