Gary Farrell Winery

Russian River Selection Chardonnay 2019

Russian River Valley, California

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The Russian River Selection bottlings are quintessential Russian River Valley wines blended from some of the winery’s top vineyard sources. They are beautiful expressions of their varietal type and of the appellation’s unique terroir, each blend capturing the richness, purity and elegance that are Gary Farrell Winery’s trademarks. This layered and complex Chardonnay brings together fruit from several of our favorite Russian River Valley vineyard sites.

VINEYARD

The Russian River Selection bottlings are quintessential Russian River Valley wines blended from some of the winery’s top vineyard sources. They are beautiful expressions of their varietal type and of the appellation’s unique terroir, each blend capturing the richness, purity and elegance that are Gary Farrell Winery’s trademarks. This layered and complex Chardonnay brings together fruit from several of our favorite Russian River Valley vineyard sites. Anchored by the naturally balanced character of Westside Farms and intriguing floral and stone fruit notes from Bacigalupi Vineyard, the wine’s great concentration and structure derive from the nearby Rochioli and Allen vineyards. Olivet Lane Vineyard, featuring the Wente clone, adds refreshing citrus tones and excellent acidity.

WINEMAKING

The grapes were harvested in the cool morning hours at ~21-23° Brix. A quick pass was made through our rows a few days prior to harvest in order to drop fruit that didn’t express the optimal flavor concentration. As anticipated, the grapes that were delivered to the winery were packed with delicious, vibrant, varietally expressive characteristics. After a very careful hand-sorting, all the fruit was combined in the press, and used a gentle program to extract only the most desirable solids and phenolics. The resulting juice was left in tank to cold-settle overnight before transferring to 30% new and 70% one to three-year-old neutral French oak barrels and puncheons for fermentation and aging, where it remained for 9 months on its primary lees until it was time to bottle in June. The wines were racked off the primary lees only once, just before bottling.

VINTAGE

After record-breaking rainfall in late February, causing major flooding in the areas surrounding the Russian River, a relatively cool spring followed, delaying bud break into mid to late March. The delayed onset and cool temperatures would predict the beginning of harvest at a more typical date, compared to a few past vintages. The month of May brought more heavy rains. Thankfully, the cold temperatures and delayed start of bud break meant that bloom was later as well, and only a few vineyards had started to produce flowers, so damage to the crop was minimal. Summer temperatures were perfect and mild. By June, growers began to see that a big crop was forming. Come July, veraison was under way and growers had to drop lots of unevenly ripening clusters on several occasions. Despite the quantity of clusters per vine, flavor, concentration and tannin levels were quite excellent. Canopy management was extremely important in that fruit thinning was necessary at multiple stages of vine development.

TASTING NOTE

Rich & golden, yet vibrant and zesty, this beautiful orchestra of Russian River Valley vineyards offers up enticing aromas of ripe nectarine, honeysuckle, lemongrass and freshly baked brioche. Flinty, briny and spicy, the palate is full-bodied and rich, yet remarkably mineral-driven, with flavors of roasted Meyer lemon, grapefruit, ginger and just a kiss of lightly toasted oak. The beautiful saline quality balances the tangy acidity and lingering spice. Everything is nicely integrated, from the tangy entry to the long oily finish.

Color

White

Grape Varieties

Chardonnay

Appellation

Russian River Valley, California

Alcohol

13.7%

Reviews

"Balanced, Rich Texture"

Wine Enthusiast - "This outstanding wine offers a full-range of complex flavors, texture and depth, the grapes sourced from a who's who of sites, including Bacigalupi, Westside Farms and Rochioli. Gravenstein apple, Meyer lemon, tangerine and quenching acidity meld with a butterscotch accent and a balanced, rich texture." - V.B. 12/2021

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Gary Farrell 2019 Chardonnay- Russian River Selection

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Trade Materials

Other Wines by this Producer

Olivet Lane Chardonnay

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Pellegrini’s Olivet Lane Vineyard was planted in 1975 to Wente selection on AXR rootstock. The vineyard sits on 65 acres of sloping bench land in the Santa Rosa Plain, in between the warmer Westside Road region and the cooler Green Valley,where warm summer days are moderated by cool breezes and chilly evening temperatures. The combination of low temperatures, regular fog intrusion and well drained loam, clay soils create an excellent environment for growing Chardonnay that develop cool-climate characteristics and impeccable acid at fairly low sugars.The wines from this vineyard simultaneously express power and finesse, and they do so with tremendous balance. 

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