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Flowers Winery 2011 Chardonnay

Price: $35.00
SAVINGS: 22%
RETAIL: $45.00


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This deal ended 3351 days ago


Light and citrusy with a lingering finish

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The Season
2011 started off dry and warm with temperatures in the 70s in January and early February. This pattern broke in late February when temperatures plummeted and March rains delivered 20 inches and put us back to normal rainfall levels. Consistent rain and colder temperatures pushed bud break out to early April - the latest date in Flowers’ history. Flowering occurred as normal in early June with near perfect weather. The growing season was cool and fogs were prevalent below the ridge tops. Very low yields in 2011 led to uniform ripening that allowed us to achieve phenolic ripeness at lower Brix, high natural acidity, and intense flavor concentration. The 2011 harvest was fast and furious. We began picking early in anticipation of the notorious September heat spikes and all of the Chardonnay was harvested before the early October rains.

The Vineyard

The Sonoma Coast’s rocky, well-drained terrain and direct proximity to the cool Pacific Ocean allow us to grow and produce Chardonnay with fresh, bright fruit flavors, complex minerality and bright acidity. Our Sonoma Coast Chardonnay is sourced from some of the finest small and family owned vineyards within the extreme Sonoma Coast appellation (those closest to the ocean)includingFlowers’CampMeetingRidgeVineyard. The grapes are harvested in the early morning hours to ensure the fruit arrives at the winery cool and ready for whole cluster pressing. Once on the crush pad, the clusters are carefully hand-sorted before they slide gently into the press.

The Process

Whole clusters are pressed and the juice is settled for 12-24 hours before being moved by gravity into small stainless steel tanks (20%), and French Oak barrels (80%) for 100% native yeast fermentation at temperatures ranging from 52-58° F. Barrel age used for fermentation varied - new (18%) 1-2 year old French oak barrels (67%), and neutral 3 year old barrels (16%). We allowed the natural secondary malo-lactic fermentation (transformation of malic acid into lactic acid) to slowly take place in cool cellars (52° F) until we achieved an ideal acid balance. Our Sonoma Coast Chardonnay was cellared in barrel for 14 months before bottling.

The Experience
Pale gold color. Enticing, airy aromas of lemon zest and lime blossom are brought back to earth with those of bay leaf and wet flint. Fresh flavors of Asian pear and Honey crisp apple are supported by abundant texture in the mid-palate. With vibrant acidity, typical of the extreme Sonoma Coast, this Chardonnay finishes with length and elegance.

The Facts
Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
Appellation: Sonoma, California
Barrel Aging: 14 months in 100% French Oak (18% new)
Alcohol: 13.7%
pH: 3.45
As nursery owners in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Walt and Joan Flowers had long dreamed of combining their love of wine with their passion for agriculture. They knew they wanted to produce their favorite varietals, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir; what they didn’t know was that their path would eventually lead them across country to Northern California’s rugged Sonoma Coast. After responding to a small classified ad in a national wine publication, that’s exactly where they landed.

In 1989, after many information-gathering trips to Napa and Sonoma, Walt and Joan purchased 321 acres, including a ridge top, high above the Pacific Ocean on the northern Sonoma Coast. With the same determination they drew on to build their successful nursery business; the Flowers proceeded with the dream of producing their favorite cool-climate varietals in a place they believed uniquely suited to growing them.

Today, Flowers Winery produces Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from its two estate properties, Camp Meeting Ridge Vineyard and Sea View Ridge Vineyard, as well as select vineyards in the coolest regions of the Sonoma Coast AVA, which are farmed to Flowers’ specifications by their own crews.
Wine Spectator - 90 pts
"Refreshingly lively and svelte, offering a trim mix of ripe pear, apricot and golden apple. This is tight and vibrant, with good depth, intensity and length. Drink now through 2017. 6,000 cases made." –JL

Past Vintages
2010: Wine Advocate: 92 pts; Wine Spectator: 88 pts
2009: Wine Spectator: 88 pts
Aging Potential: Ready to Drink
Alcohol By Volume: 13.7%
Appellation: Sonoma, California
Barrel Type: French Oak
Body: Medium-Light
Color: Golden Yellow
Flavor Pairing: Herb Roast
Food Pairing: Shellfish, Seafood, Chicken
On the Nose: Lime, Lemon, Fresh Herb
On the Palate: Pear, Apricot, Apple
Serving Recommendation: Slightly Chilled
Texture: Silky
Varietal: Chardonnay

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California
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