Chardonnay, 2020. Las Campanas

Chardonnay, 2020. Las Campanas

Item #: C0422W2
Vintage: 2020
Varietal: Chardonnay
Vineyard/Appellation: Navarra, Spain
Color: Very Pale
Nose: Apple, Peach
Palate: Engaging
Finish: Piquant
Rating: 97
Cellaring/Serving Suggestions: Now thru 2023/Seafood, Vegetarian/12.5% Alcohol by Volume

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Bodegas Manzanos Campanas was founded in 1864 and remains the oldest winery in Navarra. Today it is run by the Manzanos Family, though winemaking in this area has been traced back to the Middle Ages. Chardonnay is a relatively new variety here, but has adapted well.

Manzanos was founded with the concept of specifically promoting wines from the Rioja and Navarra areas of Spain. Winemaking became important here around the 1850s. Unfortunately, that is also when phylloxera, a vine louse, was spreading throughout Europe, systematically destroying all of the vineyards. American vines are of the labrusca variety whereas European vines are of the vinifera variety. Spain was quicker to respond than others and accepted the cure of using American rootstock, which is resistant to phylloxera, and grafting their vine stock to it. That is how nearly every vine is propagated today.

Chardonnay is unquestionably one of the most popular wines in the world. It has risen to its pinnacle in Burgundy, France where it enjoys a popularity unmatched in the wine world. Its popularity is what caused many areas to plant it around the world, often in places where it wasn't suitable; fortunately, Navarra is. It is located in the most northern plane in Spain, which is also the coolest. This allows the grapes to slowly mature on the vine while the roots pull out the nutrients from the earth. The result is a purity and freshness seldom found. The silky mid-palate of tropical fruit and citrus would be a blessing to a seafood risotto or chicken salad.