The 1999 growing season was generally long and cool. A
perfectly timed heat wave in September lowered grape acids to ideal
levels. Still, the timing of our chardonnay harvest was comparatively
later than other recent vintages.
The vineyards used to produce the grapes for this Chardonnay Reserve
are located in the Carneros appellation of the Napa Valley. The clonal
selections for these grapevines are small cluster Dijon and Wente clones,
both of which are prized for their intense flavors and high acids
Once the ripe, hand-harvested grapes arrive at Cakebread
Cellars, they are whole-cluster-pressed; the juice is settled in stainless
steel tanks; then transferred to barrels where it is completely barrel-fermented.
After barrel-fermentation is completed, the wine remains in the original
barrels where the yeast lees or sediment is stirred once a week for
several months to help promote complexity, mouth-feel, depth and length
of flavors in the wine.
Cakebread Cellars' use of small, tight-grained French
oak barrels of varying age and different selected cooperages helps accentuate
the fruit while integrating the wine with the complex nuances of oak
Our 1999 Chardonnay Reserve has a light gold color and
rich aromas of baked apple, faint vanilla spice and lemon, with a hint
of oak. This Reserve flows smoothly over the palate. A definite and
refreshing fruit flavor resembling that of white peaches and hints of
ripe tropical melon, show in the lively and engaging interplay of fruit
acids. The finish is long and satisfying, accented by notes of vanilla.
Cakebread Cellars' 1999 Napa Valley Chardonnay Reserve is indeed a very
special wine, deserving its reserve name.
Alcoholic content: 14.1%
Napa Valley, Yountville, Oak Knoll
October 1 through October 14, 1999
100% in French
Residual sugar: 0.06g/100ml.
14 months in French oak.
Malolactic Fermentation: 34%