2018 Morgan Chardonnay Double L

Year: 2018
Appellation: Santa Lucia Highlands
Country: USA-California
Wine Spectator: 87
Vinous Media: 93
Jeb Dunnuck: 92
White Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 13.6%
Price :

"Bright and juicy, with Golden Delicious apple and Asian pear flavors that are well-spiced, ending with a fresh finish. Drink now. 779 cases made. -KM" (WS)

"Pale, glistening gold. A suave, expressive bouquet features fresh mango, pear, fresh fig and buttered toast, and spicy ginger and floral nuances emerge as the wine opens up. Well-concentrated and focused on the palate, the spine of juicy acidity supporting powerful tropical and orchard fruit, Meyer lemon, honeysuckle and saffron flavors. Rich but lithe as well, with strong finishing energy and floral-tinged persistence. 30% new French oak." (VM)

"Moving to the two 2018s, the 2018 Chardonnay Double L Vineyard is another racy, crisp, yet concentrated Chardonnay in the lineup that has loads to love. Caramelized citrus, toasted bread, honeycomb, and some orchard fruit notes give way to a medium-bodied, nicely textured, balanced Chardonnay offering bright acids and a clean, lengthy finish. Drink it over the coming 4-6 years." (JD)

Winery Notes:
Chardonnay at its best is a reflection of vineyard and winemaker. For this limited release, we went to one of the Highlands’ most experienced growers: Joe Alarid. Joe has been growing here long before the area was an official appellation, and is one of the S.L.H.’s most respected wine growers.

Originally planted in 1997, the Tondré Grapefield is one of the Santa Lucia Highlands’ premiere estates. This is the third year Morgan Winery has sourced both Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for Tondré Grapefield single vineyard wines. Tondré is located in the center of the Santa Lucia Highlands, just to the south of Soberanes and Garys’ Vineyards.

The vintage commenced with precipitation much below average, though reservoirs remained full through the season after a very wet 2017. January and February were warm, resulting in premature budbreak in select parcels, increasing worries of frost as nighttime temperatures dipped below freezing on February 23rd and 24th. Luckily, no harm was done, and the following months saw temperatures at, and often below, seasonal averages. 2018 was a classically cool growing season in Monterey- an epic year for Morgan’s cool climate varietals.

Hand-sorted grapes were whole cluster pressed, preserving fruit flavors and natural acidity. Barrel fermentation in French oak began with Montrachet yeast. Ninety-five percent malolactic conversion and 9 months aging in 25% new barrels added a touch of butter and rounded mouthfeel to the Tondré’s fruit character and bright acidity – giving us our characteristic “Morgan Balance”.

In the glass, Morgan’s Tondré Grapefield Chardonnay displays a beautiful light golden hue. Perfumes of lemon curd, gun flint, and butter toffee are supported by Meyer lemon and a hint of asian five spice on the palate. This is an elegant, layered Chardonnay with myriad food-pairing possibilities. It should be served at cellar temperature (not too cold) and will go well with flavorful seafood and poultry dishes. Medium term, proper cellaring will be rewarded.