The 2010 vintage was the coolest in the last decade and only slightly warmer than the record cool 1998 and 1999 El Niño and La Niña vintages, respectively. In fact, 2010 was a La Niña vintage, with 2,135 growing degree days (GDD) - a very cool Region I (2000 - 2500 GDD). With the exception of two significant heat events in April and May which saw temperatures exceeding 95 degrees Fahrenheit, the growing season was generally cool and foggy for the balance of May, June, July and all but the last weeks of August. We thankfully witnessed Indian summer temperatures in early September, which provided the final push needed to fully ripen the Arroyo Vista Chardonnay with ample levels of acidity remaining in the fruit.
Our J. Lohr Arroyo Vista Chardonnay is grown in the heart of the windswept and cool Arroyo Seco AVA of Monterey County. Loamy sand and gravelly loam soils of the Elder series are intermixed and underlain by “Greenfield potatoes” - stones that resemble potatoes in size and appearance and which absorb heat during the day and radiate it after sunset. This underlayment of stone effectively limits root growth to the top three to five feet of soil, harmoniously balancing the fruit and shoot growth of our richly flavored Chardonnay.
|Appellation:||Arroyo Seco AVA, Monterey County|
|Harvest Dates:||October 9-20, 2010|
|Harvest Process:||Night harvested, vineyard pressed (to 0.8 bars) and settled|
total acidity: 0.75 g/100 ml
|Yeast:||Native fermentation, M2, and CY3079|
|Fermentation:||In barrel for an average of 17
|Malolactic:||Inoculated each barrel with Lactoenos SB3 and Christian Hansen CH-11 strains of malolactic bacteria, October 2010. Completed malolactic fermentation in November 2010.|
|Stirring:||Weekly stirring of each barrel, starting November 2010 until March 2011 (during malolactic fermentation and five months post)|
|Post-stirring:||Monthly topping up of barrels and free sulfur dioxide and oxygen monitoring.|
|Maturation:||Aged in barrel sur lie for 18 months in 42% new oak barrels.|
|Barrel Type:||French oak|
|Forests:||A mix of Allier, Troncais, Nevers|
|Coopers:||Mostly Francois Fréres|
|Total Acidity:||0.67 g/100 ml|
|Alcohol:||14.22% by volume|
|Residual Sugar:||0.35 g/100 ml|
|Cases Produced:||5,426 (10,852 six packs)|
|Cellaring:||Delicious now, but can be cellared for up to 5 years|
A youthful straw yellow color, with aromas of citrus zest, pear and wet stones. The Burgundian winemaking techniques, including alcoholic and malolactic fermentation in barrel with lees stirring and extended aging, contribute a complex bouquet of toasted bread, butter, honey and vanilla. This is an enticingly delicious Chardonnay with complex aromas and flavors balanced by palate-cleansing acidity and mouthfilling richness.
—Jeff Meier, winemaker