Drought conditions continued in 2009 with few Winter rains and warm temperatures. Rain finally came in May. Summer temperatures were ideal for grape growing – cool nights and warm days – allowing grapes to ripen slowly and maximize flavor. Harvest began on September 8.
The newly pressed Chardonnay juice resembles unfined, unfiltered fruit juice. The clearer the juice, the fruitier the fermentation will be, so we clarified the juice by settling it overnight at 50° F and then inoculated it with yeast. We used four different strains of yeast, each providing unique components of richness to the wine.
To add complexity and depth, we fermented 45% of this wine in French oak barrels producing a roasted nuts aroma and greater depth on the palate. The remaining 55% was fermented in stainless steel tanks at 56° F to retain more of the grapes’ aromas of citrus and tropical fruits. After alcoholic fermentation, 45% of the wine underwent malolactic fermentation, converting the wine’s natural malic acid to the softer lactic acid, adding a buttery character to the aroma and a rich, creamy texture on the palate.
Aged for nine months in French (86%) and American (14%) oak, then bottled in July 2010.
At our Annual Vertical Tasting in February 2018, we tasted the 2009 and here are our notes: Excellent example of how well a Hafner Chardonnay ages. Tropical fruit, candied Meyer lemons, flinty and brioche aromas. Lovely bottle bouquet with flavors of pears, grapefruit and crème caramel. Well balanced.
23.6° Brix sugar
0.68 g/100 mls acidity
0.56 g/100 mls acidity