2014 Poseidon Vineyard Estate Chardonnay
Brilliant in color with a pale straw hue, the wine opens up on the nose with aromas of sliced Granny Smith apples, cream soda and hard candies flavored with the essence of lemons and limes. There's a mineral edge, reminiscent of wet stones, that adds complexity and intrigue. Upon first sip, the wine explodes with a mélange of honeydew melons, cantaloupe and raw sugarcane. This wine's signature notes of cream soda, full body, and rich mouthfeel are balanced midstream with lively acidity and freshness. Lightly roasted hazelnuts and toasted oak finish off the palate.
Poseidon Vineyard, located at the confluence of Carneros Creek and the Napa River, was originally planted in 1973 by the Molnar Family to the Burgundian varietals: Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Originally named “Molnar Family Chardonnay,” in 2012 we have elevated the vineyard name to the brand name, to reflect the single vineyard nature of this wine (but be assured the Molnars are as involved as ever). The maritime environment of the Carneros grape growing season delivers cool, foggy mornings followed by warm days that slowly nurture ripening.
Drought led conversations all over the farmlands and vineyards of California in early 2014. However, strong, compact rains in February and March helped secure a solid growing season for the vines through spring and early summer. The size of our crop was minimally affected, but it was slightly lower than the previous two years. During harvest, there were no extreme heat waves, which helped moderate ripening. The tricky issue was that, with the record-breaking drought, the vines ripened fruit earlier than ever before. Most of our varietals were ripening at the same time in early September and it felt odd to be picking Cabernet Sauvignon alongside Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Timing aside, the modest temperatures of late summer and fall offered us the luxury of picking at optimum ripeness.
The fruit was pressed whole-cluster in small batches and barrel-fermented in a cold cellar. Malolactic fermentation was long and allowed us to stir the lees for an extended period of time, boosting the smooth, elegant texture. Malolactic fermentation also helps to manage the high natural acidity of the fruit. The spice that results from using 100% Kádár Tokaj oak has made for a rich yet vibrant Chardonnay from our vineyard.
Alex Beloz, Winemaker
Michael Terrien, Founding Winemaker