This is a wild turn for Drake Whitcraft. The wine is made just like all of his other chardonnays, pressed to neutral Francois Frere barrels to ferment. There, though, Drake intentionally did not top up the barrels, allowing a natural layer of yeast to form on top of the wine (a flor, if your will).
From there it spends 5 months developing about an inch-thick layer before bottling. (Total barrel aging is well over a year).
With his winery just a half mile from the pacific, the wine harkens to notes of heady, salty, fino sherry from southern Spain and the deeply flinty, vibrantly expressive sous voile wines of Jura.
Incredible, hyper limited, and one of Whitcraft's most exciting wines to date. That's saying QUITE A LOT <3
Drake Whitcraft took over the family winery in 2007 (the winery was founded two decades before, in 1985 by his parents, Chris and Kathleen). His goal was to make balanced Central Coast wine of purity, honesty, and finesse. He grew up within the culture of wine and California winemaking. He was perpetually under the tutelage of both father Chris and friend Burt Williams, founder of the legendary Williams-Selyem winery in Sonoma. Drake is vinifying with the same old school techniques his dad used (hand-harvesting, foot-pressing etc, no added enzymes or coloration) and with much veneration to Mother Nature herself. The resulting wines are clean and impeccably balanced. They represent a cross section of the emerging class of site-specific wines coming out of Central Coast California today. \*orange wine\*