Vintage 2016
Wine Type White
Varietal Chardonnay
Region Alexander Valley
Winemaker Margo Van Staaveren

Chateau St. Jean, a pioneer in vineyard designate wines, has been producing Belle Terre Vineyard Chardonnay for more than four decades. Grown on a ranch owned by the Dick Family, located on the Russian River in southern Alexander Valley, this wine features a subtle, delicate style, making it a favorite to pair with a wide array of cuisines.

93 Points - Wine Advocate

“The 2016 Chardonnay Belle Terre Vineyard reveals beautiful citrus notions of lemon curd, lime cordial and pomelo with wafts of baking bread, shaved almonds and coriander seed. The palate is medium-bodied, lively and delicately played in the mouth with a quiet intensity of citrus layers and a mineral-laced finish.” - Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate, October 2018

Tasting Notes

Characteristically rich and full, aromas and flavors of pear, ripe melon, crisp green apple and lemon zest are framed with notes of vanilla and oak spice. Nicely balanced and well structured, the wine finishes with a lingering, bracing note of acidity.

Vineyard Notes

Since the early 1970s, when Chateau St. Jean first began working with the Dick Family, they have built a reputation as one of the premier grape-growing families in the region. The Belle Terre vineyard terrain consists of gently rolling land with well-drained, gravelly and sandy loam soils.

Vintage Notes

The extended drought was beginning to cause real concern as the 2016 growing season kicked off, but some welcomed winter rain hinted at the relief to come. After a relatively dry January we enjoyed significant rainfall in February, along with mild temperatures. Bud break was early, but was slowed by heavy April showers. While still early by historical standards, picking began about a week later than 2015, and continued at a leisurely pace, allowing the grapes to reach full flavor maturity. A traditionally sized harvest followed the lighter showing of 2015, and the extended season helped to balance the acids and add complexity to the layers of flavors

Winemaking Notes

The Chardonnay fruit for this wine is whole cluster pressed and immediately sent to barrel for fermentation. After fermentation, the wine is aged in seasoned small French oak barrels for nine months. The fruit-forward nature of this wine is enhanced by the 100% malolactic fermentation process it goes through, producing a well-structured, rich yet elegant wine.
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