Thursday September 22, 2016
Wente Vineyards continues to amplify the Chardonnay experience by inviting special guests and club members in their estate for an intimate and memorable event under the sunny California skies.
The ‘Legendary Family of Chardonnay’ hosted what can be called as a gastronomic treat for wine – especially Chardonnay - lovers. In celebration of the National Chardonnay Day last May 26, the 4th generation and 5th generation of the family led by Carolyn Wente (CEO) and Karl Wente (SVP) welcomed guests to a four-table pairing stroll featuring Wente’s diverse product range.
One can say that the Wente cloning process developed by Ernest Wente led the winery in earning the title of 'California's First Family of Chardonnay'. But in order to achieve over a century of success, work does not stop there. The family shared that it's making sure that every product released is a result of thoughtful and careful decision at every winemaking stage.
As shared by Karl Wente, below are the major factors affecting their Chardonnay process.
Vineyards | The Wente Family has two appellations – the Arroyo Seco and Livermore. Having two different vineyards has been an advantage for the family because both locations produce exceptional grapes each with distinct characteristics. As they explained, this is the most important aspect in their process, after all, this includes the picking decision. The Arroyo Seco appellation has a rich and deep soil, producing richer tropical flavours. On the other hand, their Livermore has lean and gravel-type soil resulting to a citrus or apple-like flavours with more minerality.
The use of barrels |This factor is not merely a question of the absence of a barrel, but rather what kind of barrel should be used. In producing some of their best vintages, the Wente Family does not use brand new barrels. Instead, they decide using barrels that were previously used for the second or third time.
The lees | One of the factors affecting the interesting nutty, rich, and creamy characteristic of their wine is the management of lees. They apply different lees stirring techniques depending on the desired style of the wine.
Malolactic Fermentation (MLF) |This is another technical process that needs skills and precision to accomplish. The conversion of malic acid to lactic acid involves accurate temperature and nutrients, the timing of sulphur and oxygen application, and determining the quantity of pure butter characteristic.
Based on the four factors, we now know why they truly deserve to be regarded as one of the Chardonnay pillars in the Golden State area.
Get to taste the California Chardonnay by looking at our available Wente wines.