2019 Santa Lucia Highlands Ranch Chardonnay
2019 SLH Chardonnay is like sunshine in a bottle. Rich with plenty of texture that coats the mouth, this wine opens up to a beautiful melody of fruit tones with softer floral expressions on the backside. Aromas of hazelnut, toffee, lemon meringue and rose petals. Soft, silky mouthfeel, well balanced with a rich caramel finish. Palate of passionfruit, lemon bar, and apple pie. This wine pairs well with grilled salmon and fresh vegetables sauteed in butter.
Fruit Source: Highlands Ranch Vineyard
Highlands Ranch Vineyard is located in the world-renowned Santa Lucia Highlands, also referred to as SLH; a sub-appellation that is part of the larger Monterey County, California AVA (American Viticultural Area). Sitting at the foothills of the Los Padres Mountains, this cool weather location is home to the perfect terroir for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. This vineyard encompasses a total of 32.75 acres, 5 acres of which is planted to Chardonnay. Sitting at the base of the foothills, this picturesque vineyard produces a chardonnay that we are pleased to share with our customers.
2019 provided Central Coast with a nearly ideal growing season. It all started out with a long winter, bringing an abundance of rain that went well into spring. This resulted in a late bloom and slower, but longer growing season which led to longer hang times for the grape bunches with more even ripeness throughout the vineyards. We were about 2 weeks behind average expected harvest dates. The pros to this were that we retained more natural acidity in the grapes and were able to capture more of our late summer sunshine to develop flavors. The vintage proved to bring some stellar grapes through the door and produced some quality wines packed with lots of fruit flavors and bright, fresh acidity. The fires of 2019 did not affect any of our wines as we were fully in tank and barrel by the time they arrived.
Harvested at first light of dawn, grapes are hand-picked and delivered to the winery nice and cold. At the winery, the grapes are sorted and whole cluster pressed straight to barrel. The juice is then barrel fermented and then left to age sur lee for 11 months. We allow this wine to go through 100% malolactic fermentation to round out the acidity. We gently stir the barrels for twice a month for the first 5 months to help build texture and complexity. The wine is then racked clean off the lees and bottled.
Bailarín Cellars was created in 2014 by a collective of family and friends, each following their respective passions. Together we focus on producing small lots of handcrafted wines from unique vineyard sources. We are proud to share the fruits of our labor and love with you.