2020 "Athas" Chardonnay
Aubaine is a high end boutique project of single vineyard and estate only Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Our founder Andy Lytle has teamed up with esteemed winemaker Isabelle Meunier to make the best possible expression of the Eola-Amity Hills. Aubaine is the French term for Windfall which is one of the estate vineyards that will be used in future vintages. The green wave on the label represents the Eola-Amity Hills, and the blue wave represents the winds of the VanDuzer Corridor. Our inaugural release is the 2019 vintage from the Anahata vineyard. Pronounced Ō-Bane.
A mild and dry winter in the early months of 2020 was followed by a dry growing season through the summer. However, in typical Northwest fashion our spring conditions saw wide swings between early season heat then cool. At flowering in mid-June we experienced low temperatures, cloud cover and some sporadic rains, not a lot, but enough to naturally lower our yields. Those conditions led to smaller berries, and variation in berry size, which we love to refer to as “hens and chicks”. Following that the summer season progressed with moderately warm days that weren’t too hot along with cool nights, where the vines were able to rest in the evening and concentrate their efforts on developing more fruit complexity and flavor. We were blessed with a harvest that presented very good quality fruit at lower yields. We picked our 2020 Athas Chardonnay on October 4th, where we benefited from the slightly extended ripening to produce outstanding quality with beautiful flavors, overall balance complemented by great natural acidity.
Brilliant, pale straw in color, the nose first opens up with fruity aromas; some apricot and white peaches, even a peach crumble aroma and warm brioche character. This gets followed by a beautiful core of passionfruit curd, topped with graham crackers. Fresh and vibrant on the palate, the flavors carry that beautiful white peach crumble with lovely creamy notes over wet rocks, tightening as it progresses towards a mineral finish. This is a classic chardonnay offering lovely balance, refreshing fresh stone-fruit flavors while staying vibrant from start to finish.
2020 WINEMAKING FACTS
Vineyard blocks: Blk 9 “Athas” 95 clone on 101-14
Picking date: October 4th, 2020
Harvest Data: 20.4 brix, pH 3.28, TA 6.9 g/l
Pressed: Gentle & Long Champagne program
Settled: 12 hours then racked
Fermentation: Inoculated with R-HST in barrels with 16% New French Oak
Malolactic fermentation: Indigenous and 100% complete by December 02th, 2020
Bottling date: March 7th, 2022
Cases produced: 140
Aging Potential: Well over 10 years