Thursday, May 10, 2012

Waterstone Careneros Chardonnay 2009

The barnyard activity is really picking up around here. The chicks are getting bigger and are able to fly very short distances. They’ve been able to enjoy a nice dust bath while spending a few hours in their chicken run and they’ve snacked on dried meal worms. During that time Daisy was enjoying her time on the back porch, Rooster was staring at the chickens while the humans made sure no one ate anyone else. 

One thing hasn’t changed in the past few weeks, these high temps. Mother Nature doesn’t realize it’s still spring time. Instead she has flung us into mid-June temps. The hot, humid air is perfumed with Honeysuckle as we spend our evenings in rocking chairs, sipping wine and watching the fireflies light up our woods. Last night we enjoyed sampling Waterstone Careneros Chardonnay 2009.
Nose was a little tight but began to open up after a few minutes in the glass. Soft aromas of peach with fruit flavors consisting of pear, green apple and more peach. Finish is delicate with a nice balance of acidity and fruit.

Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
 Appellation: Carneros
 Alcohol: 14.6%
 TA: 0.66 g/100ml
 pH: 3.42
 Oak Aging: 11 months
 Oak Cooperage: French oak
 SRP: $18.99

The 2009 growing season was mild and cool. Lack of rain, frost and high temps allowed the grapes to hang on the vine for an extended time. Allowing the grapes to mature on the vine provided forward fruits with mature flavors and well structured tannins. 

The Carneros soils are dense and shallow with an abundance of clay. These soil conditions provide low yields but the growing season is extended due to the maritime climate. The 2009 vintage was sourced from three Carneros vineyards; the Rodgers Creek Vineyards in northwestern Carneros, the Wilson Vineyard in the heart of the Carneros appellation and the Truchard Vineyard in northeastern Carneros.

Waterstone Winery formed in 2000 as collaboration between veteran winemaker Philip Zorn and longtime wine executive Brent Shortridge. The goal was to produce luxury wines at affordable prices. Wanting to focus on the winemaking versus the vineyards, the pair does not own the vineyards or the equipment used to make the wine. They lean on committed relationships with growers, since it’s not the winemaker that makes the wine good, it’s the quality grapes that are critical to any winery’s success.

As I type this from the couch I’m flanked by Daisy on one side and Rooster on the other. Looks like we’ve finally convinced these two it’s better to co-exist then to live separately.

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