2016 Chiaro Bianco - White wine made in Amphorae

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

Straw colored and bursting with beautiful white floral aromas intermingled with notes of fresh apricot and peach.

Our Chiaro Bianco, made in Amphorae, is a White Wine made from grapes grown on our premier estate vineyard sites within the Petaluma Gap. The blocks selected vary from vintage to vintage depending on the whims of mother nature and the growing season. In 2016, the Viognier at Catapult Vineyard 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. 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 climate of Petaluma Gap. The aforementioned “Gap” delivers cooling fog and wind in the morning followed by warm afternoons. Grapes thrive in these conditions showcasing fresh fruit flavors and crisp acidity. The 2016 vintage was characterized by good winter rain, an early bud break and moderate summer temperatures that led to extended hang time and a long ripening window for maximum flavor development.

The grapes were handpicked at first light to retain freshness. The grapes were then gently de-stemmed 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
100% Viognier
Petaluma Gap
Harvest Date
September 9, 2016
.64 g/L
Alcohol %

Tasting Notes & Pairings

The 2016 Chiaro Bianco, made in Amphorae, is a stunner. It is straw colored and bursts with beautiful white floral aromas intermingled with notes of fresh apricot and peach. The texture is the highlight–it’s bright, crisp and almost saline in quality with a lasting richness that carries through the lengthy finish.