Chardonnay Santa Barbara County Au Bon Climat 2015
An homage to Burgundy, Au Bon Climat features many renditions of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Blanc, with balance and character critical elements in every wine. These wines age beautifully because of their balance and restraint - Distinctive wines of vision and harmony.
Using the same vineyards for a number of years, the blend is from four well-farmed vineyards: Bien Nacido, Sierra Madre, Los Alamos and Rancho Vinedo. The average age of these Chardonnay plantings is more than 25 years, which is old compared to most vineyards in the area.
All the Chardonnay is carefully handpicked and sorted in the vineyard. After harvesting, the grapes are whole cluster pressed, and juice is quickly settled and chilled to begin barrel fermentation. The wine is dry and completed malo-lactic fermentation.
Au Bon Climat has been making balanced, food friendly Chardonnays since 1982. Even in the early 2000s when ripe, oaky Chardonnays were all the rage, Au Bon Climat stuck to a more subtle and refined style, with minerality and intensity. The 2015 Santa Barbara County Chardonnay is a beautiful example of the Au Bon Climat style. The flinty, stony aromas stand out while in the background is a hard spice note from surlee barrel aging. There are notes of lemon-lime and soft vanilla on a refined finish.