2021 Fletcher C21 Langhe DOC Chardonnay - Piedmont Italy
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We have been supporting David Fletcher for a number of years, because he is a great winemaker and his wines are exquisite. But there is always a little bit of excitement when his Chardonnay gets released...because it is soooo good. Who knew the Langhe in Piedmont was so good for making Chardonnay. If you have tried a Langhe Chardonnay you will agree that it is in a class of its own.
The Fletcher C21 is the second vintage where Dave has used some of his own grapes from the "Home Vineyard" (next to the train station/winery/house) in conjunction with the gower fruit he has sourced since the first vintage. It is a classic, and a great example of Langhe Chardonnay. Rich, round and luxurious with a great finish. New oak (30%) brings balance to the powerful Chardonnay flavours and natural acidity. Opening with mealy notes and lemon citrus and then slowly developing stone-fruit melon flavours this is one hell of an elegant Chardonnay. Give it an hour to open up and then match with some nice Roast Chicken.
2020 saw David pick the first Chardonnay fruit off the new home vineyard - Next to the station/converted winery in Barbaresco. 0.33 Hectares.
This vineyard was planted in 2017. North facing, David suggests it’s only good for white due to the cool site. He’s being trying to seek balance in this wine hence planting 3 different clones, all burgundy clones. This is first time these grapes will go into the Langhe Chardonnay, along with the vineyard he’s been purchasing fruit from for many years from a grower in Barbaresco.
David utilised several picking times for both his own vineyard and with the grower, to balance the glycerol texture that Chardonnay from the Langhe can exude. This helped retain more natural acidity to offset this viscous natural footprint.
If you have had the pleasure to try the likes of Gaia & Rey, Rossj Bass or Cordero’s Elioro Chardonnay to name but a few you will know that Langhe can produce some superb expressions of this variety.
For those of you who love some texture and softness in this variety you might just take a shine to this wine. 100% Chardonnay from the Barbaresco zone of the Langhe. Whole bunch pressed, and fermented spontaneously in barrel. Aged on lees for 10 months in 30% new, 70% old French oak, Burgundian coopered oak. Bottled without fining or filtration.
“It was the second year that we decided to pick the Chardonnay in two distinct picks. The first nice and early, to give the citrus aromas and palate zing. The second to add volume and depth to the palate and also to push the complexity up a level with stone fruits, melon and pear. As always we kept the oak integrated with no more than a third new” – David Fletcher