2016 Boisseau Viognier $36.00
Style: As the vines are getting older, the wine becomes more restrained and confident. Aromatically it is varietal Viognier, but with nuance. The palate has a Viognier texture and volume, but without excessive weight. The finish is less dependent on acidity as it is on phenolic persistence. 2016 was a warm vintage which is reflected in the wine’s weight.
Food pairing: Lobster.
Vineyard: Boisseau Vineyard is owned and operated by Richard Boisseau. It is located in Front Royal Virginia, in the Shenandoah Valley at about 600 feet in elevation, about 5 miles west of Linden. The vineyard was planted in 2000. It is vertically shoot positioned. Viognier is planted on a high bluff above the valley floor. Exposure is west. Soils are a deep clay/silt loam.
Vintage: A somewhat uneventful winter gave way to a warm, dry March that stimulated an early bud swell. Late April through most of May was very wet and cloudy. The vines did not look healthy with pale green leaves, slow shoot development and a fair amount of phomopsis scars.
The wet weather pattern broke in late May and flowering was very successful under ideal conditions. The rest of June and early July was typical with occasional thunderstorms. By late July we saw browning grass and cessation of new growth, always a welcome sign. Heavy thundershowers in early August stimulated some vines in more clay-based soils, but vineyard blocks in low water holding capacity soils remained in balance.
The rest of August through most of September was very dry. September was uncommonly warm, including nighttime temperatures. Harvest was September 5 and 9, 2016.
Winemaking: Chilled grapes were sorted, pressed, juice settled and browned. Barrel fermented in neutral French oak. No malolactic fermentation. Aged sur lie in barrel for 7 months. 60 cases produced. This wine will improve in the bottle for several years post bottling. Alcohol 13.7%.