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2018 Founders Donald

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Tasting Notes

This wine offers intriguing layers of poached pears, white peaches, and baked apples with complex notes of marzipan, roasted marshmallow, and smoked cashews. The mouthfeel is rich, smooth, and balanced with nuances of sweet exotic spices on the finish.


Best of Class Gold, 2019 Tri-Cities Wine Festival

Vineyard Designation

100% Estate Grown

Vintage Notes

The 2018 vintage was characteristic of Washington State with a mild winter and very hot summer. Temperatures in March and April were slightly above average, leading to bud break mid-April. A warm spring provided perfect growing conditions for the vines. Our meticulous viticultural practices allowed us to manage vigorous growth throughout the season so the plants reached optimal crop yield goals for each block. The hot summer allowed grapes to reach full maturity and ripeness levels far exceeding anything we saw in 2017 or 2016. White grape varietals received significant sun exposure creating bountiful aromatics with balanced acidity. The red grape varietals made wines that are luxurious with dark fruit aromas and silky tannins. The 2018 vintage will be one to enjoy for many years to come.

Winemaking Notes

The 2018 Donald D. Miller Chardonnay showcases the best Chardonnay our Estate Vineyard has to offer. These reserve blocks have been cropped to small yields to allow depth and concentrated flavors. Harvested at optimal maturity, the grapes were sent directly to the press as whole clusters for a very gentle pressing, after pressing the juice was cold settled for 48 hours, then sent directly to very exclusive French Oak barrels. Fermented and aged in a mixture of 500L puncheons and 228L barrels with 80% being new French Oak and 20% 2-year-old French Oak. The barrels were inoculated with a special yeast strain and had temperature ranges from 55-64 degrees allowing for a lengthy fermentation of about 4 weeks before alcoholic fermentation was completed. After Alcoholic Fermentation, the barrels were inoculated for Malo-Lactic Fermentation (MLF) and were closely monitored. The goal being able to complete MLF and to avoid the “buttery” characteristic. After MLF was seized, the wines had their lees stirred twice a month to build roundness and richness on the palate for about 4 months before being racked off the wine solids. Aged for 10 months before being stabilized and prepared for bottling.

  • Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Cases Produced: 139 cases
  • Alcohol: 13.6
  • pH: 3.53
  • Acidity: 6.0
  • Ageability: Now through 2023

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