Localization: Virginia, USA
Tasting Notes: It is fresh (no malolactic fermentation) and notably “primary” (fruit flavors at the fore, with no new wood utilized) but also interestingly complex, thanks to a very good growing season and the variegated aromas and flavors contributed by the three sites. The balance of fruit and acidity is just right, making for a very versatile wine that could be sipped solo with great pleasure or paired with a wide range of dishes.
Notes: This is a very special Village Chardonnay. The 2017 growing season gave us ideal ripening conditions and Hardscrabble's young vines had enough size to them to begin to produce significant yields. Therefor Hardscrabble's terroir markers contribute to the overall impression of this wine. The beauty of this wine is in its harmony, complexity, and balance.
Chilled grapes were sorted, pressed, juice settled and then barrel fermented warm (70's F) in old, neutral French oak. No malolactic fermentation. Aged sur lie in barrel for 10 months. The 2017 Village Chardonnay is a blend of mostly declassified Hardscrabble barrels along with press juice from all three vineyard sites. 5,010 bottles produced. This wine will improve in the bottle for many years past vintage.
Food pairing: Lightness and freshness that makes it an ideal pairing with simply prepared fish and seafood. Hearty, main course salads with grains, beans, and fresh cheeses also work well.
The Domain: One of Virginia’s premier wineries, Linden Vineyards is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, 60 miles west of Washington DC. The entire wine production of 4,000 cases comes exclusively from three distinct vineyard sites. Linden is best known for single vineyard bottlings of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Bordeaux variety red blends.
The land that was to become Linden Vineyards was a long-abandoned apple orchard. Jim Law and his family purchased the 76 acres in 1983 after several years of looking for vineyard land with high elevations and east facing slopes. After clearing trees, they planted the first eight acres in 1985. The original vines were mostly grafted and propagated in-house from budwood obtained from the few local vineyards in the surrounding area. The first planting consisted of Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Vidal, and Seyval. Heirloom apples and blueberries were also planted for a pick-your-own operation that was eventually phased out in the early 2000s. The winery building was finished in time for the harvest of 1987, Linden’s first commercial vintage.