All the Chardonnay vineyards were planted to various ‘Wente’ selections. These are the descendants from their originally planted parentage in California with slight genetic differences within each. These vineyards are unique to most Chardonnay vineyards in that they manifest the virus which come naturally to the vine producing small bunches and shot berries making for concentrated wines.
Handling of the fruit is done gently at harvest. After being picked into half ton bins the fruit goes directly to press. After a long slow press cycle the juice is barreled down with a high degree of solids, which are precursors to flavor and weight. The wines spend 15 months in 1/2 new French oak on the fermentation (yeast) lees. About a year after fermentation yeast autolysis (degradation of yeast cell wall) occurs releasing components of the yeast cell into the wine. It is after this time and under these conditions that the wines develop unique flavors of crème brulee and briochette which is the Chasseur signature. Bottled without fining or filtration, the vineyard designated wines receive another six months of bottle age before release.
Durrell 'Sand Hill'
This vineyard is owned by William Price, and farmed by Steve Hill, and is located in the Southern Sonoma Valley on the eastern edge of the Sonoma Coast appellation. The breezy hillside elevation and the cool San Pablo Bay influences create a late ripening microclimate. The vineyard was planted in 1997 to a Wente selection from the Hyde ranch via Kistler's Sand Hill block. The notes of this wine are citric with flinty, wet stone characteristics.
This tiny 1.85 acre vineyard is planted on a hillside on the Dutton Ranch in Graton, called Graton's Choice. This vineyards was planted to the Hyde selection of Wente in 2005.
The vineyard that makes up most of the blend for this wine is southeast of Sebastopol planted to bud wood from the famous Montrachet vineyard in the Cote de Beaune.
This vineyard is owned and farmed by John and Phyllis Bazzano and is located in the Russian River Valley just east of Sebastopol. The vineyard was planted to a Wente selection in 1973 and is dry farmed. There is a marine funnel effect coming in from the Pacific ocean causing foggy days and cool nights which allows for very late ripening. It is because of this cool weather that the vineyard is the last to arrive at the winery every year. The fruit notes of the wine are lemon grass with steely, wet stone and briochette characteristics.