The famous Robert Young Vineyard is located in the north central Alexander Valley. The Chardonnay plantings are in alluvial clay soils. Robert Young saw an opportunity to custom tailor a Chardonnay clone that was best suited for his vineyard site. Using the best selection from his original plantings of the Wente clone, Robert Young had his “Robert Young Clone” certified in 1989.
Several blocks of Chardonnay were harvested individually on different days. Each block and harvest day was kept separate throughout the winemaking process. Classic winemaking techniques, including barrel fermentation and sur lie aging in small French oak cooperage (60% new) for 14 months, were used. The barrels were tasted, and those with great fruit intensity and texture were selected by Winemaker Margo Van Staaveren to create this Chardonnay. In keeping with the 32-year history of this bottling, this wine was made in a non-malolactic style.
“Fresh aromas of yellow stone fruit, lemon zest and hints of honeysuckle and vanilla introduce the nose of this single vineyard Chardonnay. A medium-bodied entry fills the mouth with notes of melon, clove and wet stone minerality and ends with a lasting lemon oil finish. The wine has a creamy texture with bright acidity, making this an excellent food wine.” - Margo Van Staaveren, Winemaker