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Fall Release Hyde Vineyard Clare Chardonnay

Winemaker’s Notes

In the typical style of both Hyde Vineyard and this bottling, our new Clare release is a tightly-wound wine with layers of brooding concentration and depth that needs some time to unfold. There’s a great deal of dramatic complexity on offer here. The fruit flickers between citrus and richer stone fruits and there’s a lot of non-fruit, vineyard-driven complexity – roasted nuts, toast, malt and oatmeal with an overriding saline fennel/mint edge. It’s fundamentally a wine with a lot of verve and clarity so its natural weight and power never veer to the ponderous nor clumsy. We use a little more new oak on this wine than the coastal Chardonnays as the fruit is so powerful, so I suggest aging this for at least six months following delivery. At the time of writing these notes the wine’s youthful grip dominates the finish, but it’s a very long and persistent wine so it should age beautifully in the style of the 2006, which is currently showing its great vineyard pedigree. One of the finest wines of the vintage but requires some patience and cellar time.

Focused tight racy wine. Peach, nectarine and waxy apple fruit with flint, toasted almond and mint complexity. Really herb-infused aromas. Bone dry, dense mineral palate. Wet stones, chamomile and quinine then broad orchard fruits. Deep and soft richness with air. Brighter citrus notes. Really chiseled wine with quartz-like purity. Expansive length to finish. Drink between mid-2015 and 2021.

Andy Smith

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Harvest Date

September 10th


Carneros Napa Valley


Old Wente

Age of Vines at Harvest

20 years

Barrel Aging

Barrel fermented with complete malolactic fermentation and 13 months aging in 52% new French oak followed by four months settling in tank


610 cases of 750mL
12 cases of 1.5L
8 bottles of 3L