Chamisal Vineyard is a winery I’d never heard of until I started this SIP Certified series. According to the winery, Chamisal Vineyard’s 85-acre Chamisal property is the first vineyard planted in the Edna Valley in 1973. Today it’s planted to the California classics, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay as well as Rhone varietals Grenache and Syrah, and a small block of Pinot Gris. 

About the Wine: The Chamisal Vineyards 2015 Chardonnay is made from 100% Chardonnay grapes (mostly clone 76 and clone 96, with a small amount of clone 352) harvested from the Chamisal estate vineyards in Edna Valley, California. The fruit was all hand harvested and hand sorted before going to press, then cold settled. The juice was then fermented in 100% French oak barrels and underwent full malolactic fermentation as it aged in FO for 13 months. It was racked to tank and aged sur lies one month prior to bottling.

13.5% ABV

Flavor Profile: The Chamisal Vineyards 2015 Chardonnay is immediately aromatic upon opening, emitting scents of nuts, honey, and matchstick flint. This Chardonnay appears a soft straw on the pour, settling into the glass more luminescent — still pale, but golden.

Initial aromas are intense with apples, pears, lemongrass, lemon curd, and a warm nuttiness. Swirl to release a more serious nut-note, complete with skins, and find the flintiness of earlier. Lift the nose just above the glass to breathe in soft floral elements and firm pollen.

The palate of the Chamisal Vineyards 2015 Chardonnay is immediately soft, medium-full, with a background of pillowy texture. There’s a delicate acidity that cleanly cuts through the center and leaves you with a mouthwatering sensation. Dominant flavors are of pomme fruits, nectar, almond, almond skins, a hint of popcorn, and lemon pith.

Food Pairing: I paired the Chamisal Vineyards 2015 Chardonnay with baked chicken, wilted spinach, and sauteéd veggies (broccoli, butternut squash, and onion), tossed with a light mozzarella cheese. Yum.

The heartiness of the chicken breast along with the decadent veggies and gooey cheese perfectly paired with that acidic line, which helped cut through the richness of the meal. Meanwhile the herbs (herbs de provnce) on the chicken and the salt level in the veggie sauteé brought out the fruit components in the wine.

Overall this was a well-balanced Chardonnay that paired well with this weekday meal.

More Info: I received the Chamisal Vineyards 2015 Chardonnay as a sample for review. (Cheers Faith!) Retail: $35. For more information about Chamisal Vineyard, their wines, participation in SIP Certification, and to purchase wines directly, please visit the Chamisal Vineyards website.

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