2011 Avenius Chardonnay
Eggshells, melon, mandarin orange, hay, hazelnut and white flowers.
Dances on the palate, light crisp with a long, bright green apple finish.
Traditional French cream based seafood dishes. Oysters on the half shell, or smoked trout.
Avenius Vineyard is owned and operated by Shari Avenius, who is also Linden Vineyard’s director. It is located on the Blue Ridge one half mile north of Linden Vineyards at an elevation of 1,300 feet on a steep northeast facing slope. Soils are well-drained rocky greenstone and slate. The Chardonnay vines were planted in 1996 and are trained on the French lyre trellising system.
The majority of the growing season of 2011 was close to perfect with dry, warm conditions all summer. Vines were in good balance with a little water stress by late August. Early ripening grape varieties such as Sauvignon Blanc were showing concentrated and expressive flavor profiles. We were ready for our 7th good harvest in a row.
It was not to be. The rains started in late August with the, albeit brief, appearance of the residual rains of Irene. This one event was not a problem. The vines needed some refreshment and the clusters were unaffected. Unfortunately Irene was just the beginning of a series of rain events that lasted through the entire month of September. Harvest was September 6, 2011. Early ripening whites such as Chardonnay were mature enough to harvest before any significant negative impact of the rains. In sum, 2011 vintage produced vibrant, mineral driven whites.
Sauvignon Blanc was mature enough to harvest before any significant negative impact of the rains. We were forced to pick a bit early, so the acidity is very bracing when the wine is young. In sum, 2011 vintage produced vibrant, mineral driven Sauvignon Blanc.
The chilled grapes were sorted, pressed, juice settled and then barrel fermented in older French oak barrels and 500 liter puncheons . No malolactic fermentations. Aged sur lie in barrel for 10 months. Bottled August 2012. This wine should plateau from 2015 to 2017. 170 cases produced.