The 2014 growing season was very similar to 2013. While both flowering and veraison came early and fast, with mostly moderate temperatures, and only a couple of modest heat spikes during the summer, everything ripened very evenly. A combination of plenty of cool foggy mornings and afternoon sunshine, combined with big swings between day and nighttime temperatures produced grapes with rich, concentrated flavors.
This heritage-clone Chardonnay is sourced from the Upper Barn and Cougar Ridge vineyards at the rugged upper reaches of the Alexander Mountain Estate, between 1,600 and 1,800 feet above sea level. A variation of the Hyde-Wente clone of Chardonnay, the Upper Barn clone thrives at these high elevations and produces exceptional mineral aromatics. Hand-picked and hand-sorted, the fruit is gently pressed and allowed to ferment naturally in barrel with wild yeasts from the vineyard. The lees are then stirred monthly during malolactic fermentation for superior aromatic and textural finesse. After 11 months in 38% new French oak, the wine is racked and bottled. The 2014 Legacy Chardonnay shines gold in the glass, with luminous aromas of lemon peel, jasmine, white pepper and mint. The silken palate shows a fresh and bright minerality with polished acid and delicate toast aromas alongside a lush mid-palate and a bracing Meyer lemon framework. Fresh, pure, and refined, this wine will continue to evolve in the cellar for many years.