Palate

The 2016 offers alluring, energetic aromas and flavors of honeysuckle, kiwi, apricot, citrus zest, pineapple, and toasted almond – a dazzling, juicy bowl of exotic fruit held together with flinty structure, pleasing minerality, and refreshing acidity.

Harvest

Plenty of rain in winter and spring ended a series of drought years and kicked off a long, warm growing season that produced clusters of fruit with radiant color, pure flavors, and enticing aromas.

Winemaking

Whole-cluster pressed and fermented with wild yeast in individual barrels (75% oak, 25% stainless steel); 0% malolactic fermentation. Shafer’s single-vineyard Carneros-grown Chardonnay is produced from small-clustered clones of grapes selected for their low yields and distinctive flavors. Fermentation takes place within individual oak and stainless steel barrels using native yeasts. The wine matures on the lees for 14 months and since it undergoes no malolactic fermentation this Chardonnay retains a lively natural acidity. The vineyard is named for its Red-shouldered Hawks and other birds of prey, who play an important role in Shafer’s sustainable farming practices.

Aging

14 months in 75% new French oak barrels (Allier, Vosges) and 25% in stainless steel barrels.