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55% Pinot Gris, 40% Pinot Blanc and 5% Aligoté
Santa Maria, California
An unusual but regal blend of 55% Pinot Gris, 40% Pinot Blanc and 5% Aligoté meant to recreate Burgundy's fabled Charlemagne vineyard in Medieval times.
The name Hildegard is a salute to the history of Burgundy and to her husband the King of the Franks, Charlemagne. During his rule in the early 800s the importance of wine and viticulture exploded. The Catholic Church and Charlemagne ruled most of Europe and both were interested in wine and viticulture. The Church needed wine for the Eucharist and under Charlemagne more and more vineyards were planted in Burgundy. Charlemagne brought civilization and order back after the dark ages. Part of this rebirth was wine production.
A wine named after an Empress has to be exquisite. This distinctive blend of Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc and Aligoté is barrel fermented and gets extra barrel and bottle time. The barrels for this program are all new Francois Frères French oak. Combining a unique blend with long term barrel aging made something special. The lovely aroma of vanillin and hazelnuts from the oak and the mouth-coating richness makes for a wine that seems like a top-notch Chardonnay. The fruit profile is more melony than Chardonnay and the aromas are more flowery than Chardonnay. Food matches that work with Chardonnay would work fine with Hildegard.
Bright and finely cut. Notes of lemon peel, white flowers, along with an intriguing minerality.
Scored 95 points/Editor's Choice Wine Enthusiast Magazine.