Varner Amphitheater Block Chardonnay 2013

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In 1980, twin brothers Jim and Bob Varner began their labor of love when they planted Spring Ridge Vineyards in Portola Valley in the northern part of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Located 10 miles from the ocean, Spring Ridge is made up of several separate blocks of vines, each with its own microclimate and soil difference. The vineyard has been dry farmed and hand-hoed since 1988. Insecticides have never been used, nor fertilizers. The grapes are hand-harvested only in the morning into small lug boxes to allow natural cooling of the juice. Bob works in the rows during each harvest, insuring that sorting is done at the vine rather than at the winery. The wine is treated as naturally as possible, using indigenous yeast and malolactic bacteria from the vineyard. Rather than fining and filtering, the barrels are hand-racked, using a fontaine d'aspiration and a hand-cranked barrel lifting device. With this method, the lees are not disturbed and the wine is clarified without filtration.

The Amphitheater Block is one of the original Varner plantings from 1984. The head-trained vines are on their own roots and are 28 years old, and there are no pesticides, herbicides nor insecticides used in the vineyard. The wine was barrel-fermented, gravity racked and underwent 100% malolactic fermentation before spending 8 months in 28% new French oak.
Category White Wine
Country California
Region Central Coast
Appellation Santa Cruz Mountains
Brand Varner