2017 Chiaro Bianco - White wine made in Amphorae

Club Price: $36
Limited Production
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92 Points (2016 vintage)
The Wine Advocate, 2018

Gold colored and bursting with beautiful white floral aromas intermingled with notes of butterscotch, peach, and apricot

Our Chiaro Bianco, made in Amphorae, is a White Wine made from grapes grown on our premier estate vineyard sites within the Petaluma Gap and Carneros AVAs. The blocks selected vary from vintage to vintage depending on the whims of mother nature and the growing season. In 2017, the Viognier at Catapult Vineyard and 5 Sisters was extraordinary and we knew we were going to make something incredibly special. The soil is predominately deep clay on the southwest facing slopes at Catapult. At 5 Sisters it is clay on volcanic rock with a steep easterly facing aspect. The result is that the clay pushes the vines to develop deep root systems and provides moisture throughout the entire season. These conditions are ideal for slow, even ripening in the face of the cool climates of the Petaluma Gap and Carneros. The 2017 vintage was characterized by good winter rain, an early bud break and moderate summer temperatures, with one massive heat wave during Labor Day weekend. This led to extended hang time and even ripening towards the end of the growing season, bringing a beautiful clarity of flavor in the wine.

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The grapes were handpicked at first light to retain freshness. The grapes were then gently destemmed and 20% was transferred directly to the amphorae as skins. The balance was pressed and transferred as juice to amphorae. The juice and skins were allowed to ferment naturally, with no intervention. After two weeks the wine was pressed off the skins and the juice was racked to separate vessels for sensory evaluation. The finest lots were then selected for an additional 6 months of aging in amphorae. The wine saw minimal SO2. The final blend was then tasted and scrutinized several times before bottling.

Wine Type
White Wine
92% Viognier, 8% Chardonnay
Sonoma Coast
Harvest Date
October 2, 2017
.60 g/L
Alcohol %

Tasting Notes & Pairings

A beautifully balanced wine with layers of complexity and intrigue. It has the spectrum of stone and tropical fruits layered on top of a creamy refreshing body.