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.) Bright and finely cut, Hildegard shows another side to Jim Clendenen's magic touch.
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.
"The 2018 Hildegard Estate White Blend comes mostly from the Bien Nacido Vineyard and was barrel fermented and aged 18 months in 66% new French oak. It offers a Burgundian bouquet of spiced orchard fruits, brioche, honeysuckle, and spicy oak to go with a beautifully textured, medium-bodied, elegant style on the palate. It shows a touch of nuttiness with time in the glass and has bright yet integrated acidity as well as a great finish. I always love this wine, and the 2018 is no exception." 94 points, Jeb Dunnuck
"The white Burgundian blend is a lost, or perhaps never found, art in the New World, but Jim Clendenen's blend of 55% Pinot Gris, 40% Pinot Blanc and 5% Aligoté always makes one wonder why. Aromas of freshly squeezed lemon, honeysuckle, grapefruit peel, Asian pear and light pecan lead into a texturally taut palate that blends brisk citrus and warm, salty flavors seamlessly." 93 points, Wine Enthusiast
"The 2018 Hildegard opens with flint and crushed stone notes over a core of toasty white peaches and floral perfume. The medium-bodied palate is toasty and perfumed with uplifting yeasty touches and bright freshness, finishing long and ultra perfumed. Interesting and yummy!" 91 points, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Au Bon Climat Hildegard Estate White Blend