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2018 Eric Kent Stiling Vineyard Chardonnay
2018 Eric Kent Stiling Vineyard Chardonnay

Eric Kent
2018 Chardonnay
, Stiling Vineyard
Russian River Valley

Aged to Perfection

Golden straw colored in the glass, wonderfully rich, it's loaded with roasted apple and stone fruit flavors wrapped in caramel, clove, nutmeg, and generous oak followed by a long and fresh lemon oil finish.  Full bodied, utterly luscious and satisfies the palate completely.  It would normally take many years in a wine cellar to achieve this level of development, yet there's plenty of freshness and structure for further evolution.  Reach for this one when you want something truly special.

Prime drinking:  Mid 2022 through 2027
Graceful ageability:  2028+

Winemaking
32 months in barrel (roughly double than most ultra premium Chardonnay) they bottled the utterly gorgeous, unabashedly old school results unfiltered.  All this extra time in barrel produced one of their most sumptuous Russian River Chardonnay to date.

Stiling Vineyard
Rued and Sees Blocks: These two Chardonnay blocks sit on a flat middle section of the vineyard, just east and parallel to Vine Hill Road.  Slightly eastern exposure moderates the temperature in this otherwise exposed section, leading to harvest dates toward the end of September or early October with brix usually around 22-24 at harvest.  Both blocks are similar in aspect and the main difference is clonal, with the Rued tending to be floral, tropical and overtly fruity while the Sees offers more restrained apple and spice character.

Vintage
The 2018 Sonoma County vintage offered moderate weather, cool evening temperatures and a long, even growing season. The weather conditions were ideal and allowed the grapes to ripen slowly and evenly over the course of summer and early fall. This allowed the grapes to gain flavor complexities and ripe tannins, while retaining natural acidity. The vineyards offered grapes of exceptional quality and high yields alike.

Analysis
Appellation:  Russian River Valley, Sonoma County
Vineyard:  Stiling
Varietal:  100% Chardonnay
Clones:  96% Rued, 4% Hyde
Aging: 32 months, 60% New French Oak
pH:  3.42   TA: 6.2 g/L
Bottling:  June 7, 2021
Release date:  Spring 2022
Alcohol: 14.2%


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