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2020 Chalk Hill Founder’s Block Chardonnay

Founded nearly four decades ago, this spectacular 1,300-acre property features 300 acres of vineyards and wilderness areas along with the winery and hospitality center. William Foley further expanded his wine empire in Sonoma County with the purchase of the Chalk Hill Estate in 2010. Michael Beaulac, who joined the team in 2021, produced this wine from other Foley family vineyards in Carneros, Chalk Hill and the Sonoma Coast.

There is a lot to love in this rich, well-made Chardonnay from Chalk Hill. The 2020 Founder’s Block Chardonnay is the pinnacle Chardonnay in the Chalk Hill portfolio only made in truly exceptional vintages on the Chalk Hill Estate. The Founder’s Block Chardonnay comes from 100% Proprietary Clone 97 Chardonnay, which has gone through 100% malolactic fermentation. This process helps to balance the wine by keeping in contact with the oak barrels, giving the Chardonnay a hint of creaminess.

The color opens with a rich golden yellow color. The aromas out of the glass show depth and complexity. There are notes of apricot, ripe pear, a hint of almond, honeysuckle and minerality that are woven throughout keeping it fresh on the nose. The palate is creamy and layered, but without too much weight. The acidity is lively and perfectly framed through the palate. There is a slightly dusty element that adds more complexity and freshness. The minerality gives this Chardonnay a delicious mouth-feel and lifts it to a long finish. The Chalk Hill Founder’s Chardonnay is made to age well up to 10 years. A great achievement from William Foley and the winemaking team at Chalk Hill Winery.

By Perry Miroballi

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