2021 Madson Chenin Blanc, Santa Barbara County, California, USA
This Chenin Blanc is sourced from a small block near Los Alamos in Santa Barbara County. This tiny block was planted in the late 60’s in a giant sand dune. Silica, calcare, and chalk make up the soils beneath these old vines. Ocean breezes whip through the wind gap over the vineyard and through the dense vine canopy. It is not unusual for mounds of sand to be blown from one end of the vineyard to the other, burying vine trunks.
Chenin Blanc for this cuvée was gently crushed by foot in bins and and left to macerate for 24 hours on the skins. It was pressed to tank, then racked off heavy lees to 2 neutral barrels. Both primary and secondary fermentations proceeded naturally in barrel. The wine remained in cooperage for 9 months with frequent batonage. No sulfites were added to the wine, and it is neither fined nor filtered. Please expect some solids and tartrates in the bottle especially with age.
This cuvée shows the coastal sand dune terroir with saline aromas and dense fruit quality. There is brine, tart green apple, caramelized pears, satsuma mandarin and lanolin on the nose. On the palate, briny minerality, citrus rind and neutral wax predominate.