Airfield Estates bottle

Airfield Estates

Chardonnay, 2015

The Miller family has farmed its 860-acre property in Washington's Yakima Valley for four generations. According to the Miller family story, their patriarch, H. Lloyd, convinced FDR to authorize the irrigation of Yakima's agricultural land as part of the New Deal. In 1968, two years after H. Lloyd's son, Don, visited Napa to research viticulture, the Millers began to grow grapes—a full decade before the Washington wine industry began to attract international attention. (Up to that time, the Millers' property had been best known for having been used by the military for training World War II pilots; today, the farm operates from two of the old hangars.) They planted many of their vines on their original roots—a risky technique, as wine-grape vines are typically grafted onto roots resistant to pests. Nevertheless, many of those vines thrived and today still produce some of the Millers' highest-quality grapes. H. Lloyd's grandson, Mike, expanded the farm to become a trusted supplier of grapes to several Washington wineries, while his son, Marcus, crafts the Millers' own Airfield Estates wines—including this exclusive collaboration with Blue Apron.

Profile

Chardonnay is a very subtle grape that, left to express itself naturally, shows ample sophistication—which is too often obscured by the flavor imparted from fermenting and aging the wine in oak barrels, as well as other common winemaking practices. This Chardonnay, made solely from estate-grown grapes pressed as whole clusters for gentle extraction of the highest-quality juice, was fermented and aged entirely in stainless-steel tanks (no oak barrels). This was done to preserve the wine's orchard-fruit flavors and hints of spice, and to wrap them in a soft texture—achieved by leaving the wine in contact with the spent yeast cells at the bottom of the tank for four months. The wine did not undergo a common process called malolactic fermentation in order to maintain its bright, mouthwatering acidity.

Low
High
TANNIN
SWEETNESS
BODY
ACIDITY
APPEARANCE
Pale yellow
APPEARANCE
Pale yellow
FLAVORS & AROMAS
White pepper
Apple
Asian pear
Ginger

Pairing

Because this Chardonnay has subtle fruit characters accented by notes of ginger and white pepper, all carried by bright, palate-refreshing acidity, pair it with lighter fare such as milder-flavored seafood dishes, spring vegetables and poultry.

More About The Wine

The Millers’ property sits right at the heart of the Yakima Valley. The region contributes just under half of Washington's wine-grape supply, as the climate is suitable for nearly every variety, red or white. Yakima is essentially high desert, so it experiences a nearly 200-day-long growing season of warm days and cool nights. Because the air and soil are dry, and the winters colder than in most wine regions, the region has few problems with crop infections or pests. This allows the vines to live longer and grow deeper-reaching roots—all of which results in greater concentration of flavor in the grapes.

DID YOU KNOW?

Grapevines are usually grafted onto roots resistant to phylloxera, an insect that eats the roots. Grafted vines, however, live only for a few decades.

  • VARIETY
    Chardonnay
  • VINTAGE
    2015
  • VINEYARD
    Airfield Estates
  • APPELLATION REGION, STATE
    Yakima Valley, Washington
  • OAK
    Stainless steel (no oak)
  • SOIL
    Warden silt loam
  • ALCOHOL
    13.4%
  • FARMING
    Conventional

WARNING to California Consumers Group 22 Created with Sketch.

Tasting Notes from Members