Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Handley Cellars/Great wines For All Dishes/What's On your Table?

We have two great wines from Handley Cellars and a great chef to pair different cuisines with these beautiful wines.First to the tasting notes !Starting with an amazing sparkling wine,from Handley Cellars. the 2015 BLANC DE BLANCS ESTATE VINEYARD ANDERSON VALLEY. The sparkling wine contains grapes sourced from our CCOF certified organic estate vineyard. It is comprised of 100% Chardonnay selected from our block 3B planted in 1987 with cuttings selected from Ordway Valley Foothills Vineyard. These were some of the first vines planted in Anderson Valley and some of the first vines planted on the Handley Estate property. Anderson Valley was a relatively unknown wine region at the time so Milla Handley sought out plant material that was already proven to succeed here. These older vines have leaf roll virus and are planted in a cold spot on the valley floor exposed to afternoon winds. These combined factors delay sugar accumulation and maintain acidity while developing ripe fruit characters making them ideal for making sparkling wine. IN THE CELLAR The grapes were delivered to the winery in the cool early morning. They were loaded into the press full cluster and a long gentle traditional m├ęthode champenoise press cycle was employed. Juice yields were on the order of 110 gallons a ton. VL1 yeast was selected for fermentation of the base wine to release floral terpenes and provide fruity flavors. The wine was fermented in stainless steel tanks and malolactic fermentation was completely avoided. A more traditional selection DV10 yeast was used for the tirage culture. The wine was aged en tirage on the yeast for 16 months prior to disgorging. A very small dosage of sugar was added at disgorging to soften the wines crisp acidity. IN THE BOTTLE The resulting wine is new world in style dry yet fresh and fruit forward. It is light and crisp on the palate with bright citrus and tropical fruit notes effusing from the fine and persistent bubbles. It finishes with more traditional notes of yeasty brioche or hints of fresh baked dinner rolls. We will also enjoy two great white wines including Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris. The Pinot Blanc was picked by hand and gently pressed whole cluster. The juice was allowed to settle for three days in a stainless steel tank and then racked off the solids to another stainless steel tank to begin fermentation. The juice was inoculated with VL1 yeast which was selected for its ability to enhance the terpenes naturally present in this varietal. A small amount of Riesling was blended in post fermentation to add structure and a hint of sweetness. Both the Pinot Blanc and Riesling were prevented from undergoing any malolactic fermentation to preserve their bright fruity characters. The wine was sterile filtered and no eggs, dairy, or animal derived products were used in the production of this wine. Next we will open the crisp Pinot Gris. The fruit for this wine was sourced from Helluva and Romani vineyards located at opposite ends of Anderson Valley. Helluva Vineyard was picked on the second of September at 22.5 brix, and Romani was picked on the 21st of September at 24 brix almost three weeks later. Moderate rainfall returned in the 2016 vintage but a warm spring resulted in early bud break and bloom. The warm weather continued through spring and early summer and we feared that we might pick earlier than the 2015 vintage the earliest on record here in Anderson Valley. Luckily, the weather cooled just as we moved into harvest and we picked approximately one week later than in 2015. With closer to normal soil moisture levels brix, acidity, and fruit morphology was more closely aligned as we are accustomed. We picked the Helluva Vineyard to preserve acidity, and to provide herbal and mineral components. We allowed the Romani Vineyard to hang longer to achieve ripe stone fruit flavors. We have two different cuisines which Chef Luc Latouse has chosen to pair with these three perfect wines made by Randy Shock.We saved you a seat,please join us!Cheers! Click here and join us as we enjoy great wines and stories from Anderson Valley and Stark's Steakhouse and Seafood and China Garden.

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