Sierra Mar is a superb vineyard planted by the renowned grower Gary Franscioni on a dramatic hilltop location at the southern end of the Santa Lucia Highlands. We at Bernardus are honored to be among the few to receive both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from this superstar vineyard.
Grapes: Bernardus is very fortunate to be able to select the celebrated Wente and Dijon clones for these hand-picked Chardonnay grapes.
Fermentation: All our Chardonnays are fermented and aged in the Burgundian tradition. Our Sierra Mar Chardonnay grapes are gently whole-cluster pressed and fermented using a special selection of yeasts. This Chardonnay undergoes a complete malo-lactic fermentation in barrel to enhance richness and complexity. In addition, each barrel is hand stirred every two weeks until shortly before final blending and bottling.
Tasting notes: On the nose we find beautiful aromas of ripe white fruits with hints of caramel. The luscious palate exhibits flavors of ripe peaches, tangerine, and white cherry fruits, accented with subtle toasty oak notes. The texture is crisp yet rich, extending through a beautifully long, finely focused finish. This is a superb example of one of California’s finest vineyards!
Appellation: Santa Lucia Highlands.
Cooperage: 100% French; 33% new: Sirugue and Billon cooperage.
Picking dates: October 9th & 12th, 2021.
Bottling: June 16th, 2022.
971 6-packs (750 mls.)