2018 Starmont Chardonnay Carneros
Traditional methods are used—aging sur lies for 10 months in 75% French oak to add richness and partial malolactic fermentation to balance the wine’s acidity. Modest use of French oak enhances the wine’s expression of region, while not playing too dominant a role in the overall wine. 40% of the blend comes from the historic Stanly Ranch with the balance sourced from vineyards throughout Carneros. A combination of barrel fermentation (55%) and stainless steel tank fermentation (45%) was used with the goal of providing a complex and interesting Chardonnay that maintains a varietal correctness and sense of place.
Starmont Chardonnay is crafted to enjoy with food or simply by the glass. Our aim is to retain the focus on the unique Chardonnay fruit expression of Carneros—bright acidity and apple, along with modest tropical fruit notes and spice. The 2018 is a medium straw color with D’anjou pear, Golden Delicious apple and hints of lemon curd and vanilla custard on the nose. A focused entry on the palate gives way to a slight creaminess on the mid-palate with medium weight braced by fresh acidity that promotes a long, refreshing finish. This Chardonnay will gain complexity for three years from vintage.