Ponzi Vineyards

Aurora Chardonnay 2016

Willamette Valley, Oregon

Download

Oregon Chardonnays present an unparalleled combination of bright acidity, texture and freshness of fruit on the mid-palate. Winemaker Luisa Ponzi’s goal is to allow the wines to express these characteristics each vintage through single vineyard expressions.  Aurora yields an elegant wine with bright acidity and fruit.

 

VINEYARD

The Chardonnay grapes for this single vineyard cuvée were grown on Laurelwood soil at Ponzi’s LIVE Certified Sustainable Aurora Vineyard located in the Chehalem Mountains AVA.

WINEMAKING

The grapes for this wine were sorted and whole cluster pressed to extract maximum flavor. The juice settled for 12 hours before going to barrel for fermentation. It was completed, primarily with wild yeasts, using 15% new French oak. Malolactic fermentation is 100% complete using native bacteria. Lees are stirred weekly for 6 months before a fall racking to neutral oak. Aged in barrel for a total of 20 months and in bottle for 6 months before release.

VINTAGE

For the last three years the Ponzis have been defining the new normal with early vintages in the Willamette Valley. 2016 jumped out of the gate with bud break a full 3 weeks earlier than usual. Flowering was condensed by a heat spell and an early summer gave us beautiful warm temperatures until August when it heated up. Harvest arrived later that month and was in full swing by early September. All fruit was in the door by the first part of October.

Fruit quality was immaculate with absolutely no disease pressure. Fruit set was small due to the short flowering time. Berry size was also small resulting in lower yields and gorgeously intense fruit. We would liken 2016 to the 2006 vintage where we saw lush, beautiful wines with unexpected elegance and acidity, but in achingly short supply. Truly, a stellar vintage for Oregon.

TASTING NOTE

“This perfumed and delicate nose of chamomile, white flower, vanilla wafer, lychee, honeycomb, lime zest and lemon meringue lead to a palate laced with sweet cream, marzipan, melon and lemongrass. The full, textured mouth is framed by bright acidity which brings tension and length to the finish.” – Winemaker Luisa Ponzi

Color

White

Grape Varieties

Chardonnay

Appellation

Willamette Valley, Oregon

Farming

Sourced from Ponzi’s LIVE Certified Sustainable Aurora Vineyard

Alcohol

13.4%

Suggested Retail Price

$65

Reviews

supple and seductive

Wine Enthusiast - “Oregon Chardonnay is attracting global attention thanks to wines such as this. Supple and seductive, it opens with splashy flavors of chamomile, lychee, citrus zest and flesh. There’s a whiff of lemongrass and just the right touch (15%) of new French oak.”

Trade Materials

Other Wines by this Producer

Pinot Noir Reserve

Willamette Valley

Ponzi Vineyards Pinot Noir Reserve is the epitome of restrained power. It hails primarily from estate grown fruit on Laurelwood soils in the Chehalem Mountains, including from some of Oregon’s oldest vines. This remarkably complex wine is handcrafted with tremendous attention to detail.

Classico Pinot Noir

Willamette Valley

The "classic" representation of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, this wine encapsulates the experience, innovation, top vineyard sources, and expertise of the pioneering Ponzi family. Among the first to make Pinot Noir in Oregon and the United States and, since the start, among the very best. 

Tavola Pinot Noir

Willamette Valley

Tavola is Ponzi's delicious early release Pinot Noir, a fruit-forward wine with soft tannins, made primarily from younger, lower elevations vines. Meant for early consumption, it is an unbeatable value for quality Pinot Noir. 

Chardonnay Reserve

Willamette Valley

The Ponzi family has dedicated over 25 years to innovation in farming and winemaking to develop Oregon Chardonnay's place in the world. Luisa Ponzi's formative experiences working in Burgundy in the early 1990s guide her vision of producing complex and ageworthy Chardonnay.

Pinot Gris

Willamette Valley

One of the original and most recognized Oregon and U.S. Pinot Gris producers, Ponzi was a major influence in establishing Pinot Gris as the first quality white grape variety in Oregon. Ponzi's Pinot Gris is an irresistably aromatic and expressive wine, and serves as a first encounter for many wine drinkers with Oregon wines and the Ponzi estate.

Abetina II Pinot Noir

Willamette Valley

For decades, Ponzi Abetina Vineyard, which sits on a spectacular east-facing slope born in 1975 as a clonal experiment for Oregon State University, has produced an impressive Pinot noir with unique and complex flavors. So enthralled by the success at Abetina, in 2005 an exact duplicate was planted at Ponzi’s stunning Aurora Vineyard. The experimental collection of more than 20 Pinot noir clones was planted to the same soil, elevation and aspect, as Abetina. With the added element of youth, the Abetina 2 block at Aurora Vineyard gives this cuvée unparalleled vibrancy and depth.

Avellana Chardonnay

Willamette Valley

Oregon Chardonnays present an unparalleled combination of bright acidity, texture and freshness of fruit on the mid-palate. Winemaker Luisa Ponzi’s goal is to allow the wines to express these characteristics each vintage through single vineyard expressions. Planted in 2006, Avellana yields a richer, weightier style of Chardonnay as compared to the Aurora single vineyard wine.

Pinot Blanc

Willamette Valley

Pinot blanc was planted at Aurora Vineyard in the early 1990s, taking advantage of an ideal portion of the 80-acre site. This versatile white wine is a wonderful alternative to Pinot gris. Beautiful floral aromas of jasmine and magnolia mingle with notes of lychee, lemongrass, beeswax and green tea mochi with a touch of cardamom. The textured mouth is reminiscent of shortbread and the freshness of rainwater and wet slate with bright, juicy acidity that encourages another sip.

Madrona Pinot Noir

Willamette Valley

With its first bottling in 2016, Ponzi Vineyard's remarkable Pinot noir from Madrona Vineyard showcases the consistently stunning fruit from these 30-year-old vine. It reveals a true sense of place in the bottle. The vineyard was named for the madrone trees which surround the 10-acre site and is own rooted Pommard clone. This stunning expression of the Willamette Valley is handcrafted with tremendous attention to detail.