The nose on this wine opens with a bright burst of honeysuckle fading into gardenia, followed closely by a hint of lemon rind. Stay with the glass for a moment, and you will find the floral components make way for a rich aroma of baked pears and light pastry crust, with just a trace of cinnamon and oats.
Take a sip, and the first thing you will notice the incredibly dense mouthfeel of this wine, rich and palate-filling, held up by a bright band of acidity that makes this wine luscious rather than flabby. Give it a moment, and you will quickly discover a gentle tempest of tree fruit, apples and pears opening onto nectarines and just a touch apricot. The finish is graceful and lengthy, fading into notes of toast and tart gooseberry.
This wine was fermented in French oak barrels and then aged in barrel for 11 months, where it underwent battonage (lees stirring) once per week. The 2017 Jos. Belli Chardonnay is completely accessible now, but if stored properly, it will continue to develop for at least the next handful of years.
A barrel sample, the 2017 Chardonnay Jos. Belli Vineyards has lovely yeasty/toasty scents over a core of white peaches, lemon tart, pineapple and lime leaves with orange blossoms and fresh ginger in the background. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers plenty of rich, ripe stone fruit and tropical scents with a pleasantly oily texture and great length.