2021 Chardonnay La Cruz Vineyard

2021 Chardonnay La Cruz Vineyard
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SKU: 21011

The La Cruz Chardonnay is one of our flagship wines made from the estate showing off a complement of tropical notes and flinty limestone, a signature from the ranch.  It differs from our Oro de Plata in that it is fermented and aged in French oak barrels. 

Wine Details
Petaluma Gap
Harvest Date
September 10, 2020
Alcohol %
Wine Profile
Tasting Notes
The 2021 Keller Estate La Cruz Chardonnay has a quintessential pineapple nose. The tropical notes continue upon the first sip and are complimented by the flinty limestone notes of our signature minerality from the ranch. The mid-palate expands as the creamy core reveals itself, the result of the completion of malolactic fermentation. This wine has a hint of oak to give the mouthfeel some dimension and texture. We pride ourselves on letting the varietal show first and the oak rests in the background to support it.
Vineyard Notes
By November 2020, it became apparent that the persistent, multi-year drought was adversely impacting the ponds’ levels. To reduce vine stress, we irrigated the vineyards early in the growing season to encourage them to pull nutrients from the soil and establish a healthy canopy. Keller Estate’s three rain-collection ponds, which we irrigate our vineyards, olive groves, and landscaping, were almost dry by May. Fortunately, we had fewer than anticipated heat spells in the summer. With well-established vineyard sites and intensive canopy management, the vines produced beautiful clusters, albeit with small berries. As a result, the 2021 wines were concentrated, succulent, and rich.
Winemaker Notes
The La Cruz Chardonnay is one of our flagship wines made from the estate. In 2021, we used primarily the Wente Chardonnay clone for this wine. We picked at 24 Brix on September 9th through September 25th after a warm summer, so our fruit reached optimal physiological ripeness. The grapes were pressed gently, and the juice was transferred to neutral barrels. We moved the barrels into the cave and waited for fermentation to begin naturally. This can take up to 7 days. Once the fermentation was complete, the barrels were topped and remained in the cave where the wine started malolactic fermentation. This took place slowly over several months. The wine continued to age on its lees after this. We racked the wine eventually and bottled it after 10 months of aging.