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 2020 Lightning

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2020 Lightning

 2020 Lightning
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Tasting Notes

Our 2020 Lightning is a luscious blend of French oak fermented Viognier and Chardonnay. It displays gorgeous aromatics reminiscent of spiced pear jam and apple butter with hints of banana foster. The palate is round, smooth, and impeccably balanced with secondary flavors of toasted marshmallows, lavender and lemon zest leading into tertiary flavors of vanilla beans and toffee. On exit, this elegant blend leaves a long and creamy impression on the palate.

Vineyard Designation

100% Estate Grown

Vintage Notes

The 2020 vintage will go down as a very memorable year. The growing season was exceptional with a mild winter, warm spring, and moderate summer. Bud break occurred 2 weeks earlier than normal and veraison was well ahead of schedule too. Just as we were preparing for an early start to harvest, wildfires in the Northwest created a thick cloud of smoke over Washington State. Concerns arose about exposure to smoke. Taking a cautious approach, we delayed harvest until the smoke cleared and conducted trials to determine the effect of smoke on our grapes. Fortunately, results showed no sign of smoke taint. Proximity to the source of smoke plays a big factor, and our vineyard was a long distance away. Overall, we have not seen any impact of smoke on the 2020 vintage. Another major event of this vintage was an early frost that occurred the second week of October. Our winemaking team worked tirelessly long hours leading up to the frost. By the time our vineyards had been impacted by the cold spell, our winery was stuffed with fermenting grapes and harvest was 95% complete. All remaining grapes were then hand-harvested and sorted with an optical sorter to remove any excessive M.O.G. or bad grapes. After our wines completed alcoholic fermentation, we were very pleased with the results. We at Airfield have another stunning vintage for you to enjoy. The 2020 wines showcase an abundance of ripe fruit aromatics, low tannin profiles, and exceptionally balanced finishes.

Winemaking Notes

Our Lightning blend, much like all our reserve tier wines, begins in the vineyard. The grapes for this wine were sourced from reserve tier blocks of our estate vineyard that were cropped to low yields to showcase more concentrated flavors and depth of the wines. Both the Viognier and Chardonnay components of this blend were hand harvested at optimal maturity in late September to early October and sent directly to the press as whole clusters for a gentle pressing. After pressing and cold settling of solids for 72 hours, the juice was clean racked to exclusive French oak barrels where it was fermented cool and aged in these barrels. After fermentation, each barrel was inoculated for malolactic fermentation and closely monitored, to ensure full malolactic completion without the production of diacetyl (buttery flavors). After fermentations were completed, the lees in each barrel were stirred twice a month for 3 months to help build body and soften the texture of the wine. Overall, the wine was aged for 10 months in barrels before being prepped for bottling.

Food Pairing

Lobster Cioppino
South Indian Chicken Curry
Fontina or Camembert

  • Varietal Composition: 76% Viognier, 24% Chardonnay
  • Appellation: Yakima Valley
  • Aging / Barrel Program: 10 months in 100% French Oak (60% New, 25% 2-Year, 15% Neutral)
  • Cases Produced: 184
  • Alcohol: 13.5%
  • pH: 3.54
  • Acidity: 5.9 g/L
  • Ageability: Enjoy now through 2027 with optimal maturity in 2024. Serve at 50-55°F.