Our Chardonnay Arthur is produced from 100% Dijon clones, grown on the Drouhin Family Estate in the Dundee Hills of Oregon. First planted in 1990, the low yields of these vines and their early ripening ability have been a perfect match for our climate and soils. Arthur, named for Véronique's son, is a wine that captures the bright, crisp acidity and mineral character of the vineyard, balanced with richness and lovely length.
Our 2016 Chardonnay was hand-picked into small totes, and then whole-cluster pressed. It was partly fermented in French Oak barrels to reveal the complexity of the fruit through the slow breathing process that happens in wood. The rest was fermented and aged in stainless steel to keep the vibrancy and fruitiness. Véronique then blended these two portions to create a wine of a more delicate nature - Arthur. To Véronique, it as if one brought together elements of a pure Chablis and an elegant Meursault.
2016 marks the third consecutive season of warm, dry and largely harmonious growing conditions. Spring came early, and the vineyards enjoyed the warmer and drier weather. This helped maintain small clusters and berries that could mature evenly between bloom and harvest. In fact, harvest began during the last days of August, but a cooler September allowed us to achieve an overall balance of flavor and layered complexity.
A fresh, floral nose of acacia and magnolia blends beautifully with almond notes and a hint of anise. Elegant and refined, the texture has density without weight. Flavors of pear, lychee and a touch of lemon custard present a complex, harmonious picture now, but the lively balance means you can easily cellar the 2016 Arthur for the next three to five years.