Jeriko Estate Chardonnay 2005
Tasting Notes: Aromas: Intense lemon & tropical fruits dominate the nose, but hints at the softness of a partial MLF. Flavors: A burst of crisp citric acid is balanced by pear & peach flavors, followed by similar lifted perfumed aromas. finish: A long & intense finish of crisp Chardonnay fruit is beautifully balanced by creamy developed notes. Serve with roasted poultry with herbs, plain shellfish, or mildly spiced Asian fusion dishes. Pair with Cheesecake Momma's Jeriko red currant Cheesecake. Winemakers Notes: This rich yet refreshingly crisp Chardonnay fruit is completed by a long & complex finish of creamy developed notes. The moderate pallet weight yet intense mouth-feel create a perfectly food-friendly Chardonnay. 80% of the juice was matured in stainless steel to retain the crisp acidity. 20% was racked into French, American and Eastern European oak barrels for a 100% malolactic fermentation. The fruit was put into the Bucher press directly and softly pressed (30lb) to minimize solids in the wine. The juice was put into a tank and racked, chilled, then 80% was racked again into another tank innoculated with GMO-free yeast for a long cool fermentation in stainless steel. The remaining 20% was racked into French, American and Eastern European barrels, innoculated with GMO-free yeasts for fermentation and then left to mature in the barrel for a complete malolactic fermentation. 2018 cases.
Nice organic chardonnay, made without oak but with creaminess coming from the malolactic fermentation. Bright straw in color. Aromas of pear, apple, and hay. Flavors are in the apples and cream spectrum, turning faintly buttery on the finish. Nicely made, simple unoaked chardonnay.
The Wine Spies Say: Mission Codename: Wine Royalty Operative: Agent Sparkle Objective: Send Agent Sparkle to Jeriko Estate to spy their award-winning Reserve Chardonnay Mission Status: Accomplished Current Winery: Jeriko Estate Wine Subject: 2005 Reserve Chardonnay Vintner: Danny Fetzer Winemaker: Jeff Cichocki Backgrounder: On completion of her advanced Wine Spy training, Agent Sparkle is ready for field operations. Central Command gave her the special assignment of surveiling Jeriko Estate which was founded by Fetzer Family member, Danny Fetzer. Wine Spies Tasting Profile: Look – Golden yellow, with the slightest light-green cast with long, thick legs Smell – Honey-lemon with oak and very light tangerine Feel – Initially wet, then the rounded tannins kick in to give you a gentle bite on the mid-tongue. Flavors radiate to the corners of the mouth Taste – Starts as tart apple and vanilla-oak, followed by pear, apricot and subtle lime, followed by lemon tart, with a great acidity that helps this wine pair well with most foods I could throw at it Finish – Tart-sweet initially, tapering to tart with creamy vanilla oak and lemon sorbet Conclusion – While I am obviously most partial to sparkling wines, I can’t help but get very excited about this wine. Chardonnay can vary in smell, taste and character so dramatically, especially in the US. Much of what you taste in a modern Chard is a result of the winemakers influence and the choices made in the production of the wine. In the case of this wine, the heritage and experience of the winemaking team shines through! This is a great Chardonnay that is wonderfully robust, without being obnoxious. I recommend this one to our operatives that love great whites – or those that think that white wines can’t be great! Mission Report: After a long and grueling training, I have been declared fully mission-ready! My fellow agents threw a great celebration for me and the bubbly was flowing. Now that my training – and our partying is behind me I’m ready to spy some great wines, sparkling and otherwise. Today’s mission report details my visit to the Jeriko Estate in Hopland, California. About 75 miles north of Sonoma and Napa Valley, this region is becoming recognized as the ‘wine country to the north’. For good reason, too. Wines from this area are super. When I was given the mission to place Jeriko under surveillance I was thrilled. Jeriko is the winery of Danny Fetzer and is the expression of his unique vision of wine creation. Danny comes from a large winemaking family and nearly all of his 10 siblings are in the wine business. Danny is true wine royalty, but don’t misunderstand, his is anything but pretentious. To the contrary, Danny is part artist, part builder, part scientist, part farmer – and all wine visionary. In 1997, when Danny acquired land for Jeriko Estate, he ripped out the existing vines and planted his vineyards with only the best possible rootstock. In 2000, Jeriko released its first wine, a Chardonnay. Jeriko farms all of its grapes organically and the winery is on its way to receiving Biodynamic certification as well. To date, all of the organically farmed wines that I have tried have been exceptional. Jeriko is, well, no exception! The beautiful Jeriko Estate is named after the ancient community of Jericho which upheld ancient practices and progressive farming techniques. The Estate house, which was built in the style of a Mediterranean villa, is stunning – and the perfect place to taste wines after a tour of the sprawling vineyards of the estate. And for this taste, I went straight to their best Chardonnay. The Jeriko Estate Reserve Chardonnay is a stunning wine. I mean, it looks gorgeous and it drinks beautifully. It is better than I expected it to be and, trust me, I had high expectations from any wine that Danny Fetzer and winemaker Jeff Cichocki made for me to enjoy. This is a wine with great balance, wonderful acidity, great aromatics and real flavor. Its not as slippery and butter-fat as recent Sonoma Chards I have tasted and I love that. This wine holds up and drinks beautifully with most foods and, surprisingly, at warmer temperatures. We took our time with our tasting and we let the wine breath and let it warm. It was delicious throughout. I can see why this wine has garnered 92 points out of 100 from Wine Enthusiast, but I give it a big 94! I am recommending that our Agents pick up this wine if they love great Chardonnay, want to see how great a white wine can be, or want to try a wine made from organically grown grapes. -Agent Sparkle, signing off. Please write to me if you have any feedback on this mission or suggestions for future missions: agentsparkle (at) thewinespies (dot) com Wine Spies Vineyard Check: Jeriko Estates emerged in 1997 when Daniel Fetzer began to replant the ranch with modern rootstocks and newly available clones of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Syrah, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc, and Sangiovese. The vineyards were planted on a 6×6 foot (1210 vines per acre) high-density spacing in order to force the roots to go deeper into the gravely loam soil to optimize terroir and intensify fruit flavors. Key to Jeriko’s philosophy is the use of biodynamic and organic farming practices to promote plant diversity such as cover crops, and encourage soil balance without the use of synthetic chemical fertilizers, pesticides and fungicides. We have found that wines grown in this manner have more structural balance and require less manipulation during the vinification process; as well as being good for animal life and the environment. It’s common to see chickens, goats, and sheep roaming Jeriko’s vineyards and hillsides. The Jeriko Estate winery can be seen in this satellite photo Wine Spies Technical Wine Analysis Detailed Wine Information Varietal: 100% Chardonnay Varietal Notes: Dijon Clone 76 Acidity: 0.68 Alcohol: 14.1% Appellation: Mendocino Bottling Date: January 17, 2007 Fermentation: 100% Malolactic Fermentation Harvest Date: September 30th, 2005 Harvest Notes: The fruit was 100% handpicked for whole cluster grapes. Months in Barrel: Barrique 300L Oak: New French, and American and Eastern European oak Release Date: March 01, 2007 Special Designation: CCOF 100% Organically Grown Sugar: 24.3% Brix at Harvest Time In Oak: 12 months