Carneros, Napa Valley, California
This white varietal has been traditionally associated with the Northern Rhône, where it is blended with Marsanne to make white Hermitage wines. In 1998, three acres of Roussanne were planted on the southern end of the Truchard Estate Vineyard. Growing in soils composed of volcanic rock and ash, the vines benefit from the gently sloped terrain and cooler Carneros temperatures. Roussanne is a challenging grape in both the vineyard and winery. However, when done correctly it can produce an aromatic and delicate wine with the structure and finesse to age.
Vintage Notes: After a second record dry winter in a row; bud break came early in 2021. In spring, the drought stricken vines struggled to grow and set a very light crop consisting of small clusters and berries. Yields were down nearly 50 percent! Moderate conditions throughout summer allowed this fruit to easily ripen. As expected, the wines of 2021 are intense, austere, and concentrated.
All of the fruit was whole cluster pressed and fermented in French oak barrels (20%) new. After fermentation the wine remains in barrel on the lees (sur lie) for 6 months. A partial malolactic fermentation (30% complete) allows the wine to retain its natural acidity, while regular stirring of the lees (battonage) gives added complexity and richness.