Yield: 2.5 tons per acre
Harvest: August 23rd-September 3rd
Numbers @ Harvest: 23.0° Brix, 3.20 pH, 8.1 grams acidity
Barrel Regimen: French Oak 70% new, 30% 1-2 years; 100% Barrel Fermented; 100% Malolactic; 10 months on the sur-lie (in barrel)
11 barrels selected for Reserve program in July 2014; wine and lees stirred then aged an additional 12 months in stainless steel tank
Bottling: July 2015
Release Date: Spring 2017
The reserve wine is made by selecting eleven barrels of our estate Chardonnay after ten months aging sur-lie in our cave. These barrels—sediments and all—are transferred into a small stainless steel tank at our Domaine Eden production facility. We stir the lot and wait—aging the wine another 12 months. During this period the sediments or lees disappear into the wine. What are these sediments? Primarily expired yeast cells. Winemakers have known for a long time the preservative qualities these cells can give, especially to a white wine.
The nose is laced with gardenia blossom, baked bread and a slight reduction. The palate is tight with gripping acidity and beguiling richness. The wine is just beginning to open up at this stage. Comparisons to the Estate Chardonnay will provide many years of lively discussion.
We have been making this reserve since 2007 and I can now say, after ten years of tasting, that this wine is better than our estate bottled—not necessarily when young— but with generous bottle age (in a good cellar) it’s hard to beat.