PINE RIDGE “Dijon Clones” Chardonnay

PineRidgeChardDCThe PERSON:
Michael Beaulac (winemaker), Gustavo Avina (vineyard manager)
Napa Carneros
PINE RIDGE “Dijon Clones” Chardonnay, Carneros – Napa Valley, 2012 ($23.74)
A 14.2% alcohol, 100% Chardonnay (three Dijon clones: D76, D95, and D96) from Pine Ridge’s estate vineyard in Napa Carneros night-harvested, crushed, settled, and fermented and aged seven months sur-lie in all French oak barrels (65% new) with no malo-lactic fermentation.    Yellow straw in color with green gold highlights and with well-formed legs; dry, medium-bodied with freshly balanced acidity.  California ripeness in a cleaner style offering restrained oak and lees notes with no malo (keeps it fresher). The oak is present but subtle and integrated. Notes of banana, citrus and tree fruit. Lovely supple feel. More subtle than in-your-face. Think pork chops, seared scallops, or crab cakes. BearScore: 90.

Established in 1978 by the late Gary Andrus as a vineyard for Bordeaux Varieties on the east side of Napa Valley, Pine Ridge has since acquired other vineyard sites in premium areas across the region. Today, the Pine Ridge estate’s 200-acres span across five Napa Valley appellations – Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Oakville, Carneros and Howell Mountain.

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