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(last edited 1/25/2013 12:07:28 PM by dav_slu)

Vineyard and Winemaking:
The 2011 Ritchie Vineyard Sonoma Coast Chardonnay represents our twelfth vintage from this vineyard. As with all of the wines made here, depth and concentration are the hallmarks of these mature, 38 year old vines. We harvested a total of six different times, picking each block at the crescendo of ripeness. The 2011 vintage has a concentration and natural age-worthy acid, which expresses the true power of Ritchie. We have drawn similarities that this 2011 reminds us of our 2003 or 2005 Ritchie’s. Our final cuvee is vinified from five small blocks at Ritchie which we feel are some of the finest soils and vine exposures at the vineyard. These five different lots are aged in 100 percent new French oak barrels for 11 months, and then carefully racked to tanks. We let all of our wines rest and clarify in these tanks for another three months before bottling.

Mark Aubert’s Tasting Notes:
The harvest at the Ritchie Vineyard commenced in early September and was prompted upon grape intensity which resulted in a wonderful ripeness track. The 2011 growing season with cool summer days added even more intensity by thoroughly retaining the natural acidity. During the harvesting of Ritchie, we moved quickly to ensure that the grapes were hand-picked then immediately transported to the winery via refrigerated trucks. That being said, so much of the fruit characteristics were preserved and once again, the telltale “Ritchie Vineyard” intensities abound—yellow hues with a touch of green, while definable tones of dried lemon and lime skins make up the aromatic profile. Wonderful uplifting changes in aroma and bouquet give a true expression of this fabulous vintage that is 2011. The mouth feel is very rich and the natural acidity gives the wine stability for continued bottle aging. The wine has a slight hazy clarity showing our commitment to minimal interventional winemaking.
Bottled in December 2012
Unfined and unfiltered

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