2016 Bell Chardonnay, Yountville | Item No. 2264
2016 Bell Chardonnay, Yountville | Item No. 2264
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2016 Bell Chardonnay, Yountville
Item No. 2264 | In Stock - Ships in 2-3 Business Days

Our replanted Estate vineyard, which includes two highly-touted Dijon clones of Chardonnay, is at full production. Our Chardonnay now carries the Estate Bottled designation and is a lovely blend of these two clones.

price $45.00
club price $38.25

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2016 Bell Chardonnay, Yountville

 The Wine

Our Chardonnay grapes are estate grown on the estate Spanos Berberian Vineyard, surrounding the winery, and blended with other select vineyards in Carneros and Napa Valley. The Yountville vineyard enjoys warm summer days and cool evenings, resulting in grapes with rich fruit flavors and an excellent acid balance.


Grapes were gently crushed directly to press, settled, racked, inoculated with VL2 yeast and cold fermented to retain their full varietal character. At 16 degrees brix, twenty-seven percent of the wine was racked to French oak barrel (33% of which were new) where it completed both the primary and subsequent malo-lactic fermentations.  This wine was then barrel aged for 8 months, absent any yeast or malo-lactic lees.  The remaining balance of the wine (73%) continued cold fermentation in tank.  After fermentation was finished, 40% of the wine was racked to older barrels for further aging. (Only the barrel fermented portion of the wine underwent malo-lactic fermentation.) The remaining tank wine was aged in tank, then the three wines (barrel fermented & aged, tank fermented & barrel aged and tank fermented & tank aged) were blended, cold stabilized, bentonite fined and filtered prior to bottling.


Vintage Notes

2016 began following four continuous years of drought.  Thankfully, over 16 combined inches of rain in January and March eased those worries and the growing season began with bud break 5-10 days early.  With a full soil moisture profile provided by continuing light rains in early spring and no major heat events, fairly even shoot growth was seen throughout the valley.  No significant frost damage occurred, boosting everyone’s hopes for a normal crop load after the dismal harvest size of 2015.  Like bud break, harvest began a little early, but it wasn’t as rushed as the previous year.  During harvest, three significant heat spikes brought temperatures briefly into the high 90s before dropping back to the normal range.  With each dehydrating heat spike, the ability to determine optimal ripeness became a puzzle.  Appearances were deceiving; great patience and continued fruit sampling were key in delivering quality grapes.  Tannins seemed supple and well-integrated very early on.  Small clusters were filled with small berries, which promise intense color and flavors.

Tasting Notes

A beautifully hand crafted Chardonnay from our estate vineyard in Yountville. The restrained use of French oak comes across on the nose enhancing a citrus medley of lemon curd, pineapple, pear with hints of chamomile. The palate mirrors the nose with beautiful integration of sweet French oak notes carrying along pear, sliced apple and banana. The texture on the palate is reminiscent of a crème fraiche with only a third of the wine seeing malolactic.  Medium bodied with perfect acidity makes it easy to pair with dishes such as Pork Milanese, Chicken Piccata or Duck Confit.


Technical Analysis

Varietal    Chardonnay (100%)

Source Napa Valley

Total Acid 0.63 gm/100ml

pH         3.85

Alcohol 14.2%

Aging 27% barrel fermented & barrel aged 8 mo. in 33% new French oak; 40% tank fermented & barrel aged for 5 months; 33% tank fermented 27% malo-lactic

Bottle Date June 2017

Production 7,500 bottles

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2016 Bell Chardonnay, Yountville | Item No. 2264
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