Aperture Chenin Blanc Sonoma 2020 - 750ml

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93pts James Suckling

Baked apple, pear, dried lemon, cardamom and chamomile on the nose. Some toasty notes, too. It’s medium-to full-bodied with bright acidity and a flavorful, layered palate. Good balance of fruit and spice. Dry and creamy textured. Drink now.

90pts Jeb Dunnuck

A beautiful example of the variety, the 2020 Chenin Blanc (100% Chenin Blanc from very old, dry-farmed vines) has plenty of citrus and dried herb aromatics as well as a medium-bodied, fresh, lively style on the palate that offers remarkable purity of fruit. There are 1,300 cases produced.

Winemaker Notes

What began as a small-batch wine crafted for the perfect pairing with fresh seafood at one of winemaker Jesse Katz’s favorite hometown restaurants has turned into a classic favorite. Coming from the rich clay loam soils of an old vine California Chenin Blanc site, planted in the 1940s,  this vibrant wine showcases notes of passion fruit, nectarines, and honeysuckle with brightly lifted acidity giving way to a round, smooth mouthfeel.

 

This fruit was hand-harvested and brought in on the cool morning of September 27th. We lightly whole cluster pressed the fruit to a stainless steel tank where we let the juice chill at 50˚F for two days to settle. On the third day, we cleaned and racked it to a smaller tank leaving the heavy sediment behind. Three days later, the fermentation started naturally and we kept the fermentation below 56˚F until half the sugar was consumed. At 10 brix we transferred the young wine to barrels where it spent the remaining time on lees until just before bottling. We used half stainless-steel barrels, half once used French oak barrels for the 2020 Chenin Blanc. Once it was transferred to barrel, the wine was placed in our cold barrel room to keep the fermentation cool and slow, maintaining freshness and bright aromatics. As the wine slowly fermented for an additional 3 weeks in barrel, we topped and stirred each barrel weekly. The wine stayed in those same barrels for 6 months. At that point, we stopped malolactic fermentation in order to keep more of the fruit's natural, bright acidity.