Consistency of style is one of the hallmarks of Chateau Montelena wines, and this Chardonnay is no exception. We strive to showcase the differences and nuances inherent in each vintage while always staying within the signature Montelena framework. Consistency here certainly does not mean complacency; we are continually making small changes and adjustments to further improve the outstanding quality of this wine.
The 2011 vintage is an excellent example of the stylistic target of this wine. The cool growing season resulted in lower sugars and longer, slower flavor development. This allowed us to really hone in on the narrow band of flavors that we aim for without having to contend with any of the ‘noise’ that we see in the really ripe (hotter) years. So don’t believe everything you hear in the press about 2011 – it really was an exceptional year for Chateau Montelena Chardonnay.
This Chardonnay shows a beautiful rich golden straw color in the glass with clean pure aromas of pear and crisp green apple, all overlaid with light tropical fruit notes and a hint of honeysuckle. On the palate, this wine has wonderful fullness and creaminess without being heavy. A clean soft entry is quickly followed by crisp acidity and a rich display of fruit including juicy nectarine and white peach along with a hint of lychee and fresh citrus. The flavors on the finish are reminiscent of pear tart while the oak contribution is well integrated throughout the profile, with just a touch of nuttiness showing through.
Cameron Parry, Winemaker
Harvest dates: September 29 to October 14, 2011
Time in Oak: 10 months in 100% French oak (8% new)
Bottling Date: August 6 to August 16, 2012
Cases Bottled: 14,319 cases
Release Date: October 1, 2013