2020 Chehalem Reserve Chardonnay
On the nose, freshly toasted brioche, hazelnut shell, and white pepper arrive swiftly, with an additional hint of spiced apple. The aromatics of the wine are a great meet-cute of what's inside. The barrel toast notes quickly evolve into dynamic characteristics of a ripe pear creating a seamless dance around each other on your palate. This Chardonnay is so versatile. I would chill it on a warm day or purposefully pair it with a decadent halibut dinner.
The 2020 vintage started like a classic, cool-climate Oregon growing season. A cold spike and rain event during bloom created a historically low fruit set. Summer was moderate, and the clusters growing on the vines were extremely small with tiny berries bursting with flavor. As harvest was starting in early September, a freak windstorm created wildfires putting the vintage in jeopardy. We persisted because of our conviction for the fruit’s quality and
our belief in our winemaking team’s ability. The resulting 2020 wines are dense with layers of aromatics and structure. Despite challenges, the 2020 wines are beautiful.