los olivos vineyard
- Varietal chardonnay
- Appellation napa
The Choephoroi are
Libation Bearers. It is the title of a play by Aeschylus, and though
the pouring of libations seems quite festive, it is also a serious
task. This wine is both festive-- exuberant, energetic, powerful--
and serious-- in its intensity, minerality, and earthy base notes. The wine is composed of about 7 differente harvest lots. Some of them fermented well and quickly; others started and stopped; some again required all of two years to finish. The many fermentations resulted in nearly baffling complexity and great length in the wine. It has the richness and power familiar in many California Chardonnays, but startling acidity-- some of it the product of interesting microbial activity during the 2 years in barrel. Almost an umeboshi plum acidity; dried porcini and roast hazlenuts in the mouth. It is good.
The fruit source is the Maldonado family's remarkable mist-bathed
Chardonnay vineyard on Jamison Canyon bridging Napa and Suisun Valley.
I have been eager to make my own wine from this vineyard for many
years (Les TÃ©nÃ¨bres came
from it); I feel very lucky to be sharing some of the fruit with
Smoky, rich, Chardonnay; high acid with gravelly minerality