Our 2011 Chardonnay was hand-picked into small totes, and then whole-cluster pressed. Half of the juice was fermented in French Oak barrels (30% new) to create a round, rich texture. The other half was fermented and aged in stainless steel. Véronique then blended these two portions to create a wine of a more delicate nature. To Véronique, it is as if one brought together elements of a pure Chablis and an elegant Meursault.
2011 will be remembered as Oregon's latest growing season ever with a cool and wet September turning into a dry and moderately warm October. Harvest lasted into November, allowing for full maturity and excellent flavor development. By all accounts, 2011 is an exciting year for Chardonnay.
Like 2010, the 2011 vintage is very good for Chardonnay. The cool growing year and later harvest gave us excellent flavors and acidity. On the nose, there are beautiful white flowers, some citric fruits, and the sense of minerality that I love. Arthur can be enjoyed now, but will develop nicely for the next several years.