J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay

2012 J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay

VINTAGE
2012 continued the trend of very cool years, which began two years earlier. As such, 2012 began with even colder winter--and earlier spring temperatures- -than 2011. Fortunately, unlike 2010 and 2011, the Arroyo Seco was blessed with favorable weather from bloom to fruit-set, and dry weather from April through October, ensuring a healthy crop and decreased mildew pressure. The vintage appeared to be trending late until a short but substantial heat wave from September 30th through October 2nd ushered in the 2012 Chardonnay harvest. Heat events on October 17th and 18th pushed the remaining unpicked Chardonnay blocks to the finish line with the final load coming in November 2nd. With uniform ripening throughout the home ranch, we harvested nonstop to ensure each block was picked at its optimum ripeness. The frenetic pace was a challenge that tested vineyard and winery staff alike, but the results were well worth the sacrifice.

VINEYARDS
The vines for our J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay are grown primarily on Elder loam soils underlain by “riverstones” deposited over thousands of years by the Arroyo Seco River. These stones allow a four foot rooting zone that keeps the vines’ vegetative growth and fruit in balance. Additionally, the cool climate and winds of the Salinas Valley extend the growing season and retain the natural grape acids and intense varietal character of the Chardonnay.


TECHNICAL DATA

 

Appellation Arroyo Seco AVA, Monterey County, CA
Composition (Blend) 99.5% Chardonnay, 0.5% other white
Harvest dates October 2nd to November 2nd, 2012
Brix at harvest 24.8°
Vinification  
   Malolactic 50% in barrel
   Maturation Aged 8 to 10 months in barrels from new to fourth fill.
Barrels were stirred every two weeks until pump-out
   Barrel type American, Hungarian and French oak
Bottling chemistries  
   pH 3.60
   Total acidity 0.66 g/100ml
   Alcohol 13.90% by volume
   Residual Sugar 0.50 g/100ml
   
Cellaring Drink now, or cellar up to 5 years

 


WINEMAKER'S COMMENTS
This elegant Chardonnay has bright hues of yellow straw. Rich aromas of pear, apple and lemon custard combine with notes of roasted hazelnut, vanilla and toasty oak. The flavors are very soft with ripe pear, apple and cream ending with a lingering toasty oak finish. Barrel fermentation with sur-lie aging adds layers of viscosity, depth and complex flavors that marry well with the Chardonnay’s natural acidity and bright fruit.
Jeff Meier, Winemaker

FOOD PAIRINGS
Halibut with lemon butter sauce, boudin blanc with mustard sauce, grilled vegetables, pumpkin curry or butterscotch pudding.

WINE LIST DESCRIPTION
A full-bodied, balanced Chardonnay with flavors of pear, apple and cream, ending with a lingering toasty oak finish.

Price: $14.00 750ml
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Vine-Ripened Beefsteak Tomato, Fresh Mozzarella & Roasted Red Peppers

recipe courtesy of Chef Gabriel Caliendo, Executive Chef at Lazy Dog Cafés, California

Serves 4

  • 12 slices vine-ripened beefsteak tomatoes, 3/8 inch-thick slices
  • ½ cup Balsamic vinaigrette (your favorite recipe)
  • ½ cup pesto sauce (your favorite pesto recipe)
  • 1 lb fresh mozzarella, cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 2 Tbsp sundried tomatoes, cut into strips
  • 1 cup roasted red bell peppers, cut into strips
  • 4 Tbsp fresh basil, cut into thin strips
  • ½ cup Balsamic vinegar, reduced to 2 Tbsp
  • black pepper and sea salt to taste

Overlap sliced tomatoes on plates and drizzle with half of the Balsamic vinaigrette and all of the pesto.

In a bowl, toss together the mozzarella chunks, sundried tomatoes, roasted peppers and the remaining Balsamic vinaigrette. Top the tomatoes with the mozzarella mix and season with cracked black pepper and sea salt. Sprinkle basil strips on top and drizzle the reduced Balsamic vinegar around the plate. Enjoy with a delicious glass of J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay.

Shrimp Cakes with Pear Mango Sauce

recipe courtesy of Chef Dave Miller, Chef at The Wine Guy, Columbus, Ohio

Serves 4

  • 2 lbs raw shrimp, shelled, deveined, tails off
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 tsp granulated garlic
  • 2 tsp granulated onion
  • ½ cup seasoned Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp Cajun spice
  • 2 Tbsp dried parsley flakes
  • ¼ cup unseasoned bread crumbs

In a food processor, add the shrimp and all other ingredients, except for panko breadcrumbs, and pulse 15 to 17 times to mix thoroughly (mixture should still be a bit chunky). Form mixture in to small patties, about 2 inches in diameter.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Dredge patties in the seasoned panko bread crumbs and season lightly with salt. In a heated skillet, add 2 Tbsp of olive oil and carefully add patties a few at a time – do not overcrowd the pan. Brown on each side, then place skillet in oven and bake until just cooked through, about five minutes.

Pear Mango Sauce

  • 2-12oz cans of pear nectar
  • 2-12oz cans of mango nectar
  • ½ cup J. Lohr Estates Bay Mist Riesling
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 Tbsp Cajun seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • salt & pepper to taste

In a saucepan, add all ingredients and reduce until thick and syrupy. Reduce to about ¾ cup.

To Serve

Create a zig-zag pattern on the plate with the pear mango sauce, then place 3 shrimp cakes on top of the sauce. Garnish with a small handful of Frisée lettuce. Enjoy with a glass of J. Lohr Estates Bay Mist Riesling or J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay!

Shrimp Ceviche Salad with J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay

recipe courtesy of Chef Beni Velazquez, Chef/Partner at Bar & Bistro at the Arts Factory, Las Vegas, Nevada

Serves 4

  • 4 shrimp (16/20 size), peeled and cleaned
  • ¼ cup J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay
  • 1 Tbsp orange juice
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • ½ tsp fresh cilantro
  • ½ tsp roasted red pepper, small dice
  • ¼ jalapeño pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 pinch chili flakes
  • 1 cup baby arugula
  • ¼ tsp fresh thyme

Place shrimp in a saucepan and cook with J. Lohr Estates Chardonnay, citrus juices, shallots and garlic for 2 minutes. Place to the side and let cool, and save the remaining liquid. In a small bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients except for the arugula and fresh thyme. Slice the whole shrimp in half and place in the mix along with the remaining liquid, then cover and place in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. When ready to serve, place the arugula on a small salad plate and spoon the shrimp mixture on top. Garnish with the fresh thyme, and serve with a delicious glass of J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay!

Riverstone Scallops

recipe courtesy of Chef Anthony Castelli, Chef/Owner at La Parma II, Huntington, New York

Serves 4

  • 1 lb large scallops (save shells)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

Heat olive oil in a sauté pan, sear scallops over high heat on both sides and set aside.

J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay Sauce

Melt butter in a medium sauté pan; add 1 tsp of flour and the chopped shallots. Sauté until shallots are golden. Add the J. Lohr Estates Chardonnay and rosemary sprig and simmer for 10 minutes. Discard rosemary, add the lemon juice and whisk in a touch more butter to smooth out the sauce.

To Serve

Place scallops in the shells, arrange on plates and spoon sauce over each scallop. Enjoy with a glass of J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay.

2011 J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay

VINTAGE
2011 joins 1991, 1998, 1999 and 2010 as the coolest vintages of the last twenty years. These years are characterized by either El Niño or La Niña Pacific Ocean influence, with above-average rainfall and unseasonably cool summers. Despite the challenges that cold weather can bring, such as increased mildew and botrytis pressure, these cold vintages have produced outstanding varietal definition in our Chardonnay and White Riesling in the Arroyo Seco. Maturities in our Chardonnay came slowly, with harvest commencing on September 26th. After a few days of picking in our ripest blocks, we decided to stop and wait an additional ten days for other parts of our vineyard to reach optimum ripeness, pushing the final days of harvest into November. The Chardonnay showed ripe apple, citrus and nectarine flavors with high levels of natural grape acidity. As a result, we incorporated higher levels of malolactic fermentation to balance the acidity in our 2011 Riverstone Chardonnay, creating a wine with intense varietal character, palate weight and palate-cleansing acidity.

VINEYARDS
The vines for our J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay are grown primarily on Elder loam soils underlain by “riverstones” deposited over thousands of years by the Arroyo Seco River. These stones allow a fourfoot rooting zone that keeps the vines’ vegetative growth and fruit in balance. Additionally, the cool climate and winds of the Salinas Valley extend the growing season and retain the natural grape acids and intense varietal character of the Chardonnay.


TECHNICAL DATA

 

Appellation Arroyo Seco AVA, Monterey County, CA
Composition (Blend) 100% Chardonnay
Harvest dates September 26 - November 4, 2011
Brix at harvest 24.3°
Vinification  
   Malolactic 50% in barrel
   Maturation Aged 8 to 10 months in barrels from new to fourth fill.
Barrels were stirred every two weeks until pump-out
   Barrel type American, Hungarian and French oak
Bottling chemistries  
   pH 3.57
   Total acidity 0.67
   Alcohol 13.55
   Residual Sugar 0.39%
   
Cellaring Drink now, or cellar up to 5 years

 


WINEMAKER'S COMMENTS
This elegant Chardonnay has an attractive pale strawyellow color. The aromas are of nectarine, pear and apple, combined with a perfumed roasted hazelnut and butterscotch bouquet from the barrel fermentation and sur lie aging. The flavors are very soft with ripe pear, tangelo citrus and vanilla toastiness, producing layers of complexity with a silky balance of fresh fruit acidity and palate weight.
Jeff Meier, Winemaker

FOOD PAIRINGS
Pair with dishes such as lobster pappardelle with chive butter, grilled late summer vegetables and creamy butternut squash soup.

WINE LIST DESCRIPTION
A full-bodied Chardonnay with a balance of fruit and oak toastiness and a palate-cleansing acidity.

Price: $14.00 750ml
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2010 J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay

El Niño climatic conditions returned in 2010 with heavy winter rainfall and very cool growing conditions through early June. In fact, 2010 was the coolest growing season in terms of Growing Degree Days (GDD) since 1999 (a La Niña year), barely reaching 2,100 GDD (a very cool Region I). Typically, these years produce greater aromatic concentration with higher levels of acidity and result in a very late harvest date. 2010 was also an above-average crop year, which slowed ripening down at the end of the growing season, allowing us to selectively harvest each block with the optimum balance of flavor, sugar concentration and acidity. Harvest commenced on the 30th of September and continued until the last days of October.


VINEYARDS
The vines for our J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay are grown primarily on Elder loam soils underlain by “riverstones” deposited over thousands of years by the Arroyo Seco River. These stones allow a fourfoot rooting zone that keeps the vines’ vegetative growth and fruit
in balance. Additionally, the cool climate and winds of the Salinas Valley extend the growing season and retain the natural grape acids and intense varietal character of the Chardonnay.


TECHNICAL DATA

Appellation: Arroyo Seco AVA, Monterey County
Composition 99.5% Chardonnay, .5% Other White
Harvest Dates: September 29th through October 28th, 2010.
Harvest Chemistries: 24.4° Brix,
Vinification: Malolactic: 50% of Chardonnay in barrel
Maturation: Aged 8 to 10 months in barrels from new to fourth fill
Barrel Type: American, Hungarian and French
Bottling Chemistries: pH: 3.455
Total Acidity: 0.69 g/100ml
Alcohol: 13.63 % by vol
Residual Sugar:0.46%
Cellaring: Drink now, or cellar up to 5 years

WINEMAKER'S COMMENTS
This elegant Chardonnay has an attractive pale strawyellow color. The aromas are of pear, apple and stone fruits, combined with a perfumed roasted hazelnut and butterscotch bouquet from the barrel fermentation and sur lie aging. The flavors are very soft with ripe pear, tangelo citrus and vanilla toastiness, producing layers of complexity with a silky balance of fresh fruit acidity and palate-weight.

Jeff Meier, winemaker

 

Price: $14.00 750ml
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2009 J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay

2009 continued with a fourth consecutive year of drought in the Central Coast, with our Arroyo Seco vineyards receiving a scant five inches of effective rainfall.  Unlike 2008, however, the weather was relatively warm in the first months of the new year, spurring early bud break.  This was followed by some very hot days in May around flowering, but fortunately, the heat did not seem to adversely effect set, and crop levels in 2009 returned to more typical for the Arroyo Seco.  The summer months of June, July and August were very cool, allowing a slow, marked maturation of the Chardonnay while retaining greater amounts of the natural grape acids. September was very warm and pushed the Chardonnay vintage along, with harvest commencing on September 20th with the pick of our French clones 95 and 76 in Block 4.  For the next twenty two days, harvest progressed beautifully until the 13th of October, when Mother Nature surprised us with an unseasonable rain, which brought picking to a halt for several days until the vineyards dried out.  A frenzy of harvest ensued with the final fruit being harvested in six days, ending on October 23rd and averaging 24.9° Brix.  


Vineyards
The vines for our J. Lohr Riverstone Chardonnay are grown
primarily on Elder loam soils underlain by “riverstones” deposited over thousands of years from the Arroyo Seco River, allowing a four-foot rooting zone that keeps the vines’ vegetative growth and fruit in balance. Additionally, the cool climate and winds of the Salinas Valley extend the growing season and retain the natural grape acids and intense varietal character of the Chardonnay.


TECHNICAL DATA

 

Appellation Arroyo Seco AVA, Monterey County
Composition (Blend) 99% Chardonnay, 1% Other White
Harvest dates September 20th through October 24th.
Brix at harvest 24.9°
Vinification  
   Malolactic In barrel of 50% of Chardonnay
   Maturation Aged 8 to 10 months in barrels from new to fourth fill
   Barrel type American, Hungarian and French
Bottling chemistries  
   pH 3.45
   Total acidity 0.72
   Alcohol 13.9
   Residual Sugar 0.53%
   
Cellaring Drink now or cellar up to 5 years

 


Winemaker's Comments

2009 J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonay has a bright and youthful straw yellow color.  The aromas are of lime zest, ripe pear, nectarine and pineapple with caramel, butterscotch, honey and vanilla perfume from the barrel fermentation and sur lie aging.  The flavors are very complex and rich with citrus, stone fruit and barrel toastiness gracefully balanced by fresh acidity, creating a very flavorful and wonderfully balanced Chardonnay.

Jeff Meier, winemaker

 

Price: $14.00 750ml
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Simple Roasted Chicken with Mushroom Risotto

recipe courtesy of Chef Chris Edwards, Chef of New South Kitchen, Charlotte, North Carolina

Serves 4

  • 4 boneless skin-on chicken breasts (approx. 8 oz each) (airliners or single lobe breasts work best)
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt                   
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp chopped garlic                   
  • 1 cup dark chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup fresh herbs—parsley, thyme, and oregano   
  • 4 Tbsp butter, cut into chunks

Roasted Chicken:
Marinate the chicken the night before—dissolve the salt into the lemon juice and J. Lohr Estates Chardonnay. Stir in the olive oil, garlic and herbs. Put the chicken in a large zip-lock bag with the marinade and refrigerate overnight.

To roast, preheat oven to 400°F. Remove the chicken from the marinade and drain well. Heat the vegetable oil in an ovenproof sauté pan, large enough to hold all four breasts comfortably, over high heat until very hot. Add the breasts, skin side down. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook 2 to 3 minutes until the skin is well-caramelized and crispy. Turn the breasts over, and cook 1 more minute, then place the pan in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes to finish cooking the chicken. Remove the pan from the oven, and place the chicken on a plate to rest.

To make the sauce, place the empty sauté pan back on the stove over high heat. Add the chicken stock to the pan and reduce the stock to 1/4 cup. Reduce the heat to medium. Return the chicken to the pan with the butter and swirl gently to incorporate. If the sauce over-reduces and begins to break, add 2 tablespoons stock and swirl. Keep warm.

Mushroom Risotto:

  • 3/4 lb wild mushrooms                    
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock (stems removed, washed and sliced)           
  • 1/2 cup diced shallots or onion       
  • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves               
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 7 Tbsp olive oil                       
  • 1/4 cup ground Romano cheese
  • 1 cup Arborio rice                   
  • 2 Tbsp snipped chives   
  • 1 cup J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay

To roast the mushrooms, preheat oven to 400°F. Toss the mushrooms with 3 tablespoons olive oil and thyme. Season with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Place the mushrooms on a sheet pan and roast 10 to12 minutes. In a large saucepan, heat the wine and stock together with the roasted mushrooms (add any liquid that the mushrooms released during the cooking as well). Sweat the diced shallots in a large sauté pan over medium heat in the remaining 4 tablespoons of olive oil, without browning. Add the rice and stir well to coat the rice with the oil. Add 1/3 of the hot mushroom liquid to the rice. Stir the rice frequently as it cooks and absorbs the liquid. When the liquid is almost completely absorbed, add another 1/3 of the liquid. Repeat until all the liquid is absorbed. Stir in the butter, Romano cheese and chives. Serve immediately with roasted chicken and pan sauce spooned around. Enjoy with a glass of J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay!

Poached Salmon with Sauce a L’aneth

recipe courtesy of Chef Lance Barto, Chef of Strings Restaurant, Denver, Colorado

Serves 4
Salmon Poaching Liquid:

  • 1 ½ cups water                       
  • 1/3 bunch of parsley
  • 1 ½ cups J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay       
  • 1 white onion
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns                   
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 bay leaf                       
  • 5 stalks of celery
  • 5 sprigs thyme                       
  • zest and juice of one lemon

Bring all ingredients to a boil, and lower to a simmer. Let simmer for about an hour and strain. Once strained, return the liquid to the pan.

Sauce à L’aneth: (makes approx. 1 cup of sauce)

  • 2 medium shallots, finely chopped           
  • 1 cup crème fraîche
  • 1 fl oz clarified butter                   
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 3 Tbsp whole butter                   
  • 1 fl oz lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay       
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 Tbsp fresh dill, chopped   

Sauté the shallots in the clarified butter over low heat until they turn translucent. Deglaze the pan with lemon juice and white wine, and reduce by half. Add the crème fraîche and Dijon mustard and reduce the heat to low to warm the sauce through. Melt in the whole butter, one tablespoon at a time, while constantly stirring. Once the butter is mounted into the sauce, stir in the dill, and season with salt and fresh cracked black pepper.

Assembly:
Bring poaching liquid to a boil in a large shallow pan, and then reduce to a very low simmer. You should barely be able to see bubbles forming at the bottom of the pan. Place the salmon into the pan so its partially covered by the poaching liquid and cover. Cook approximately 5 minutes, or until desired temperature is reached. Be careful not to overcook the fish as it will be quite dry. Warm the sauce and ladle over the fish. Garnish with a sprig of dill and a lemon wedge. This dish is a perfect pairing with J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay!

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