Absolutely Eloise Chardonnay
- Case Production: 337 cases
- Vineyards: Ritchie Vineyard, Sebastopol Vineyard and Rued Vineyard
- Cooperage :90% new French Artisan Oak
- Vinification: Picked into small hand lugs, hand sorted, whole cluster pressed, native yeast fermentation, Sur lies with bâtonnage
The sibling to the Absolutely Eloise Pinot Noir’s is our 2013 AE Chardonnay. The 2013’s have captivated our winemaking team since they were brought into the winery. This wine was crafted from three different vineyards and each has had a major impact. The largest single component is from the Ritchie Vineyard. It provides a tropical fruit base and minerality that we build the wine around. Then we take a small percentage of the Rued Vineyard, which provides hints of ginger and spice aromatically, but on the palate gives us racy clean acidity. The last component is from the Ritchie Vineyard, but from the portion that we call the “Long Rows”. This part of the vineyard is almost completely comprised of “moon dust”. It brings an amazing depth of texture to the wine. The three parts together give us a wine that soars from the glass. It has layers of flavors and textures that makes the wine disappear from the bottle at a very fast pace.Named for our granddaughter Eloise, whose joie de vivre lights up the winery we crafted two wines, a Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, which exhibit her energy and spirit.
It is with the wonderful relationships we have with growers Kent Ritchie and Steve Dutton that we have had the opportunity to increase our production in 2012 and 2013 of small lot wines in our Chardonnay program.
Dutton Ranch Boswell Hill Block Vineyard
The Boswell Hill Block was planted by the Dutton family in 2007 for Chateau Boswell. This steep hillside vineyard located in the famed Green Valley is planted with a Northwest aspect at 4'x7' spacing. The vineyard is planted to a recent Wente clone from the Hyde selection and grafted to 101-14 rootstock. 2009 was the first tiny harvest from this very promising new site.
Dutton Ranch Rued Vineyard
Green Valley Ranch, also known as the Rued Vineyard, has a unique history. The 40 year old vines are the original source of the Rued clone of Chardonnay that is now propagated in various locations. The Rued clone is known for having Muscat flavors when tasted off the vine and wines produced tend to be very floral and intense.
This is the second Chardonnay vineyard Warren Dutton planted. Planting began in 1969 and was completed by 1971 with an Eastern orientation of rows planted in the old style of 8 × 12 spacing on Phylloxera resistant St. George rootstock. 2009 and was the first harvest for Chateau Boswell from this exceptional vineyard.
Dutton Ranch Sebastopol Vineyard
This Russian River Valley vineyard was planted in 1980 with a Robert Young derivative of the old Wente Clone selected for its high fruit tones. Goldridge marine based soils and dry farming account for an expression of minerality in this wine that is unlike any other.
The character of this vineyard is reflected in the beautifully aged gnarled Old Wente clone vines which produce tiny clusters and a low yield per vine resulting in wines with the expression only old vines can deliver. Further lending to the character of the wines from this famed vineyard is the volcanic soil composition of pumice, rock and the Goldridge soils for which the Russian River Valley is most known. In fact this vineyard has numerous soil types within a single block. Kent Ritchie has been farming Chardonnay on his ‘Ritchie Vineyard’ since 1972 and has established long term relationships with some of the most sought after winemakers and vintners in Northern California. The Boswell block comprises 3.2 acres of the Old Wente vines at the top rise of the hill with mostly volcanic and Goldridge soils and very low vine yields. The Russian River Valley climate is defined by its proximity to the ocean, and is bordered by the Russian River and the Mayacamas mountains. Coastal breezes bring cooling fog through the Petaluma wind gap in the morning and evening, balancing the afternoon heat enjoyed in this appellation. This temperature differential creates excellent conditions for our Chardonnays as the fruit is afforded a long growing season, allowing time for optimum fruit maturity.