90 Points - Wine Enthusiast
2012 Duckhorn Vineyards Napa Valley Chardonnay
At Duckhorn Vineyards, we have been making wine using grapes from the finest Napa Valley vineyards for over 35 years. Building on this rich history, our Napa Valley Chardonnay comes from the coolest regions. In the cellar, we applied classic techniques of French oak barrel fermentation with lees stirring, resulting in a Chardonnay that balances the complexity and richness of Napa Valley.
Varietal Content: 100% Chardonnay; Cooperage: 100% French Oak Château-style barrels (60 Gallons), 90% Barrel-fermented, 45% New oak, 55% Second Vintage
This lush and complex Chardonnay showcases layered aromas of white peach, nectarine, tangerine zest and honeydew melon, followed by rich, warm notes of crème brulée and chai. Though the palate is round and silky, a fluid acidity provides balance and length, while adding definition to flavors of stone fruit, citrus blossom and melon.
The 2012 growing season offered near-perfect growing conditions. Though budbreak was late due to heavy spring rains, warm weather during bloom allowed the vines to set a large crop. Increased yields were the result of more berries, not larger berries. This translated into even higher quality in the winery, as the skin-to-juice ratio remained ideal. Slightly cooler-than-average post-veraison weather and a lack of any heat events allowed for greatly extended hang time. Harvest was 2-3 weeks later than average, and the grapes arrived at the winery in pristine condition.
Released: April 2014
September 20 - November 3, 2012
0.50 g/100 ml titratable acidity
14-28 days fermentation at 50-65° F