2018 Division Chardonnay "Un"
2018 Division Chardonnay “Un”
Johan Vineyards – Van Duzer (67%), Eola Springs Vineyard – Eola-Amity Hills (23%), Cassin Family Vineyards – Yamhill-Carlton AVA (10%)
Willamette Valley AVA
In our opinion, you could not have asked for a better growing season than during the 2018 vintage. In July and early August, a long stretch of dry and hot weather helped the vines grow, but the heat wave broke right before véraison, giving the grapes milder daytime temperatures and cool nights to promote flavor development and preserve the bright acidity that we love. Rainfall was also ideal, where there was enough hydration to keep these dry-farmed vineyards hydrated without sacrificing concentration. That weather held through harvest, and as a result the fruit was some of the best we’ve seen in years.
Our 2018 Chardonnay “Un” is a cuvée of three of our favorite Chardonnay sites in the Willamette Valley. Two thirds of the fruit comes from the biodynamically farmed Johan Vineyards, located in the Van Duzer AVA, a new Willamette Valley AVA named after the Van Duzer Corridor, a break in the Coast Range that provides a cooling maritime influence that preserves acidity. Rounding out the cuvée are Eola Springs Vineyard, including some old vine Mendoza clone Chardonnay, and Cassin Family Vineyards, one of our youngest, but most promising sites.
In order to help the wine ferment via the grapes’ indigenous yeasts, we prepare a pied de cuve to help kickstart the primary fermentation. We use this method on many of our sites, as it creates gorgeously complex wines that do not struggle to complete their primary fermentation. The fermentations were long and cool in a mix of stainless steel, new Austrian oak, neutral French oak Burgundy barrels, as well as one newer French "Aquaflex" barrel, a water bent barrel designed to restrain oak flavor impact without losing valuable tannin and numerous compounds that enhance structure and elegance. The wines completed the secondary malolactic fermentation by early summer of 2019.
The 2018 Chardonnay “Un” strikes an incredible balance, with brightness and lift on the palate to match the richness from the fermentation in oak. Fresh cut grass and matchstick like flint combine with crisp green apple, a touch of grapefruit rind, and brioche straight from the oven for a bright Chardonnay that will satisfy even the biggest of Chardonnay skeptics.
Alc 12.8%, pH 3.24, 285 Cases Produced