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Au Bon Climat Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley Who Says Nuits-Blanches au Bouge 2002

External Review by Appellation America:

Winemaker Jim Clendenen makes a number of different Chardonnays, but his Nuits-Blanches au Bouge is specifically designed to show off Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay, with grapes drawn from Bien Nacido Vineyard’s Block K and the remainder from his own vineyard, Le Bon Climat. Two passes through Bien Nacido yielded grapes at 23 brix and 26 brix, while the Le Bon Climat grapes came in at 22 brix. After pressing the juice went directly into barrel dirty and was inoculated; fermentation occurred in (75 percent new) Francois Frere barrels, where the wine remained for one year (on the lees) before racking and returning for another six months. Bottled unfined and unfiltered, it is aged in bottle another year before release. Why drink a nearly five year old California Chardonnay? Because it is a delicious example of Burgundian style in California. The nose is creamy and nutty at the same time, showing secondary and tertiary aromas that come with age. In the mouth, there is plenty of buttercream and sweet, sweet ripe fruit that is very vibrant and not at all oxidized. Plenty of citrus and tropical fruit flavors, along with anise and lavender, combine with a well integrated lees/barrel component to take this Chard to another level. Bracing acidity pairs up well with the framework and body of the wine. Stylistically, this is the type of Chard that I favor: rich, delicious and nearly profound. <HR>Purchase this wine as part of the Bien Nacido Vineyards Collector’s Case, a unique offering of 12 vineyard designated wines from 12 different winemakers. <HR>

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Au Bon Climat:
Founded in 1982, Au Bon Climat (which means "a well-exposed vineyard") produces internationally-recognized Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Blanc wine from grapes grown in California's Santa Barbara County. The Au Bon Climat winery is located on the world-famous Bien Nacido Vineyard, and is owned by winemaker Jim Clendenen. Au Bon Climat was listed on Robert Parker's Best ... Read more
Founded in 1982, Au Bon Climat (which means "a well-exposed vineyard") produces internationally-recognized Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Blanc wine from grapes grown in California's Santa Barbara County. The Au Bon Climat winery is located on the world-famous Bien Nacido Vineyard, and is owned by winemaker Jim Clendenen. Au Bon Climat was listed on Robert Parker's Best Wineries of the World in both 1989 and 1990, while Jim Clendenen has been named Winemaker of the Year in 1992 by the Los Angeles Times, and Winemaker of the Year in 2001 by Food and Wine Magazine. The winery is not open to the public for either tours or tastings. Members of our wine club and mailing list are invited to our Spring and Fall Open Houses. Read less

External Reviews for Au Bon Climat Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley Who Says Nuits-Blanches au Bouge

External Review
Source: Appellation America
10/16/2008

Winemaker Jim Clendenen makes a number of different Chardonnays, but his Nuits-Blanches au Bouge is specifically designed to show off Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay, with grapes drawn from Bien Nacido Vineyard’s Block K and the remainder from his own vineyard, Le Bon Climat. Two passes through Bien Nacido yielded grapes at 23 brix and 26 brix, while the Le Bon Climat grapes came in at 22 brix. After pressing the juice went directly into barrel dirty and was inoculated; fermentation occurred in (75 percent new) Francois Frere barrels, where the wine remained for one year (on the lees) before racking and returning for another six months. Bottled unfined and unfiltered, it is aged in bottle another year before release. Why drink a nearly five year old California Chardonnay? Because it is a delicious example of Burgundian style in California. The nose is creamy and nutty at the same time, showing secondary and tertiary aromas that come with age. In the mouth, there is plenty of buttercream and sweet, sweet ripe fruit that is very vibrant and not at all oxidized. Plenty of citrus and tropical fruit flavors, along with anise and lavender, combine with a well integrated lees/barrel component to take this Chard to another level. Bracing acidity pairs up well with the framework and body of the wine. Stylistically, this is the type of Chard that I favor: rich, delicious and nearly profound. <HR>Purchase this wine as part of the Bien Nacido Vineyards Collector’s Case, a unique offering of 12 vineyard designated wines from 12 different winemakers. <HR>



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