Cakebread Chardonnay Napa Valley 2018 - 750ml
91 Points James Suckling
Aromas of peach, sliced apple, cream and crushed stones. It’s medium-bodied with crisp acidity. Creamy and straightforward. Drink now.
Over 30 years ago, Jack Cakebread came to photograph the Napa Valley for a book and while there, he casually mentioned his interest in one day owning a vineyard to some family friends who had a ranch in Rutherford. When he returned home that afternoon, the phone rang and it was the family friends offering to sell their property. He headed back up to the valley that same afternoon to make his best offer, and Cakebread Cellars was born.
As the Cakebread family reflects upon the many profound changes in the wine industry over the last 33 years, such as innovative farming techniques and new methods of reaching out to consumers, they note that their key values have remained the same. Dedication to making the highest quality wines and a commitment to family has followed a continuum as their first small vineyard has grown into a thriving internationally distributed wine company.
This region sits just north of San Pablo Bay, whose influence provides the cool, windswept conditions that produce Chardonnay with ideal balance between fruit characters and acidity. Soils here are predominantly Haire Loam, a light clay that helps grapevines naturally regulate vigor for fruit of intense concentration.
The 2018 growing season was a dream come true. Early spring rains replenished the soils, clusters ripened evenly over a long, slow summer—cooler than usual, and with no heat spikes— so grapes reached full maturity right on time. Yields at harvest were abundant and of very high quality.
We harvested the grapes by night in small batches as they reached perfect maturity. Night harvest gives us fruit that is still cool from the evening temperatures, and we press it directly into tank as whole clusters. We then transfer the juice into French oak barrels (87%) and stainless steel tanks (13%) to ferment. In order to achieve maximum fruit expression, we aged the wine on its yeast lees for eight months with intermittent stirring to enhance texture and boost complexity.
TA: .73 g/100 ml
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