Vineyard and Vintage
2015 RUSSIAN RIVER CHARDONNAY – Adam and Eve Vineyard
Attractive light gold color with an open star jasmine, citrus blossom nose above red apple, stone fruit and hints of smoky oak . Flavors are reminiscent of fresh apple and pear, and are framed in a richly bodied mouthfeel that finishes with balanced acidity and just a hint of fruit sweetness. This will be one of the best aging of the Killian Chardonnays and should be optimally balanced about a year after release.
It’s fitting that the Russian River Valley appellation lies at the geographical heart of Sonoma County. This is where some of wine country’s best known and most beloved varietals really earned their reputation. This is the appellation that set the standard for California, and perhaps New World Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, while remaining home to sought-after old vine Zinfandel.
This is where the top wineries in Napa go to get their cool-climate grapes. True to the Sonoma County spirit, it’s where the leaders of the premium wine boom, now household names, were not wealthy businessmen, but inspired farmers and newspapermen; a dancer; a pilot.
The Russian River Valley earned AVA (American Vita cultural Area) status in 1983, and comprises 15,000 vineyard acres.
Interestingly, the name of the vineyard we use, “Adam and Eve” was derived from two old growth Redwood trees that for hundreds of years stood as a landmark near the confluence of Dry Creek with the Russian River.
After another dry winter, the Chardonnay at Adam and Eve vineyard ripened quite early for the cool Russian river area, and only 3 days earlier than the previous vintage. The earlier ripening allows us a lot of latitude to determine the best harvesting point, so we picked exactly on flavor and under perfect fruit condition. This wine was made entirely from a single, small (3.5 acre) vineyard owned by longtime winegrower Dennis Hill and positioned along the upper Russian River near the confluence with Dry Creek, home to many of the most sought after Chardonnays of the appellation.
In the last few months that the fruit was ripening, Ed visited the vineyard every 1 to 2 weeks, and started taking samples of the fruit to check on the sugar or brix. Ed was looking for just the right sugar level to pick the Adam and Eve grapes. In the month of September 2015 there were a few weeks of high temperatures 90 to 100, which ripened the fruit a couple weeks earlier than most years. The grapes before picking looked perfect, clusters showed no stress, and were beautiful in color and taste. The juice fermented perfectly, and proceeded on through the malolactic fermentation, and rested on its primary lees (‘sur lie’ aging) to build more body and complexity. Then throughout the year the wine was aged in French barrels, just as our 2012, 2013, and 2014 Chardonnay did.
- September 10th, 2015
- 5.7 gram/liter
- Chardonnay, Clone 4, 100%
- 5.7 g/l