Maitre de Chai Herron Reserve Skin-Contact Sauvignon Blanc

Regular price $33.00

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Winemaker: Marty Winters and Alex Pitts

Appellation: Sonoma Mountains, Sonoma, California

Grape Varieties: Sauvignon Blanc

Planted in 1969, the Herron Vineyard is an acre and a half of Sauvignon Blanc on Sonoma Mountain. This dry-farmed vineyard is one of the oldest Sauvignon Blanc parcels in the United States. These beautiful old vines produce incredible fruit that we tend to, farm and pick ourselves by hand.

In 2014 (our first year working with the vineyard), we made the decision to take half of the fruit and make a skin fermented wine. At the time, Alex was the Assistant Winemaker at The Scholium Project, and their most popular wine, hands down, was 'Prince in his caves', a skin fermented Sauvignon Blanc from Sonoma Mountain. As an homage to Abe and to the great skin fermented wines of Northeast Italy, we decided to experiment with our small Sauvignon Blanc vineyard. The wine we made that year was outstanding but in the years between, whether it be the low yields or overall conditions, kept us from making another 'orange', or skin fermented, Sauvignon Blanc until this vintage.

Whole cluster, crushed by foot in open top bins and fermented at ambient Berkeley summer temperatures made for a rose-gold colored wine with the intense tropical fruit aromas we would expect. Immediately poured into the glass, it's Guava and Papaya seeds, but as the wine opens up, a brooding side of dried Herbs de Provence and Calvados take center stage.Five barrels produced. This wine will absolutely last decades.

Maître de Chai translates to cellar master, or the person responsible for the development and aging of wine. By extension, the humble cellar master is the person responsible for the management of the winery.

Established in 2012, Maître de Chai is the personal project of Marty Winters and Alex Pitts. Together we look to make wines of high quality in a way that best showcases the sense of place where the grapes are grown and the personality of the vineyard. From the ground to the bottle, the character of the wine is the focus of our endeavor. We source grapes from unique and distinct single vineyards that are impeccably farmed here in California.

As our name implies, we care for the wines in the cellar. We defer to nature, limiting our intervention. We taste and we wait, allowing the wines to develop and speak for the places in which they are rooted.