89 pts & Best Buy, Wine Enthusiast April 2017
Our 2015 Simple Life Chardonnay is brimming with tropical fruit, orange zest, apricot and floral aromas. A vibrant, lively acidity perfectly frames the lime, tropical fruit and orange blossom flavors and fresh-cut pineapple finish. This medium bodied wine is crisp, elegant and an inviting expression of Chardonnay’s true fruit nature. Some fans of our Simple Life wine think of it as ‘the Chardonnay for non-Chardonnay drinkers’. Enjoy this beauty with grilled chicken, pork or pasta in a creamy sauce, salmon cakes or dishes with mild curry sauces. We invite you to also savor Simple Life Chardonnay on its own.
With its moderate climate, and diverse terroir, the state of California offers many distinct AVAs. For our 2015 Simple Life Chardonnay, grapes were sourced throughout California’s prime grape growing regions. Known for its abundant sunshine which helps to ensure a reliable extended growing season, the “Golden State” has become an American winemaking mecca on par with the other great wine regions of the world. California boasts nearly 100 American Viticulture Areas (AVAs), that encompass over a half million acres of vineyards, supporting a diverse varietal mix. Cool climate varietals like Chardonnay and Pinot Noir thrive in the fog-bathed coastal areas, while the warmer inland valleys provide the perfect conditions for heartier heat loving varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc.
Despite another year of drought, a lighter yield and one of the earliest seasons on record, the 2015 vintage is shaping up to be a stellar one. A mild winter caused an early bud break that was followed by prolonged bloom and an unseasonably cool spring that caused some of the blooms to shrivel and fall, an effect called shatter. The uneven pollenization contributed to smaller grape clusters and variable crop size in Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino and particularly for late blooming varietals such as Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon. Fortunately, the high temperatures in August and early September accelerated maturity and produced fruit with concentrated flavors and intense aromas. The smaller 2015 crop comes after the heavy harvests of 2012, 2013 and 2014.