The restrained use of French oak comes across on the nose enhancing
creamy citrus meringue notes.
The palate mirrors the nose with beautiful integration of
sweet French oak notes carrying along pear, sliced apple and banana. A stony minerality
lingers on the finish with grapefruit and tangerine notes coming through.
Yet another year of drought conditions began with our “rainy season” ending early, followed immediately by flowering
fruit trees opening up before the end of January. We received only about 75% of our usual rain. Spring was long,
cool, overcast and punctuated by several windy days during flowering that badly affected fruit set. Shatter was evident
in several of the vineyards we work with; by harvest, our Chardonnay crop was off by about 40% and our Syrah by
60%. Growing season temperatures were steady and warm – perfect for developing the complex fruit flavors we look
for, as well as preserving the acidity necessary for mouth-watering wine. Harvest began in July, our earliest harvest
date on record at BELL, and we were completely finished bringing in our red grapes by the first day of October, also
a record. To quote Anthony, “Young wines look to be of excellent quality with deep color and lovely fruit aromas,
and initial analysis shows no serious impacts from the series of heat waves we experienced. Overall yields are down,
but it is safe to say that while we will not have the expected quantity to sell in upcoming years, the quality will be
35% barrel & malo-lactic fermented & barrel aged; 30% tank
fermented & barrel aged for 6 months; 35% tank fermented & aged
with perfect acidity makes it easy to pair with dishes such as Pork Milanese, Chicken
Piccata or Duck Confit.