Helfer Vineyard, 2016

$ 55.00

The Helfer Vineyard is located in the Vine Hill area of the Russian River Valley. The vineyard’s densely planted vines require hand cultivation and yield more concentrated fruit than can be achieved by traditional California vine spacing. We bottle this Chardonnay without fining or filtration to preserve its finer qualities.

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Winemaker's Notes

This bottling, our 20th vintage from this wonderful yet tiny site, shows great generosity and viscosity as it usually does. It is an impressive site for Chardonnay and regardless of whether we harvest on the earlier side or the later side of ‘the window,’ its core personality remains remarkably consistent. Star fruit, apple and pear is the fruit signature for Helfer.

Despite a slightly lower alcohol level this year (14.3%) this vintage is a bit more lusty than 2015 or 2014 were before it. It is currently showing its non-fruit elements on its sleeve: Umami-laden lees contact, barrel elements play tag team in balancing that signature star-fruit character of this site. There is an incredible level of creaminess yet it still finishes on a salivary upward note. It works well with roast chicken, lobster and/or close friends.






Cases Produced

Release Date


  1. Judi Scherrer

    VinousMay 2019

    The 2016 Chardonnay Helfer Vineyard is creamy, open-knit and quite expressive. Lemon confit, orchard fruit, white flowers and mint all add lovely brightness to play off the beautifully layered fruit. The Helfer is a bit more suave and charming than the Scherrer Vineyard Chardonnay tasted along side it. 92 points. Antonio Galloni

  2. Judi Scherrer

    Wine SpectatorJune 2019
    Offers mouth filling richness, with well-structured flavors of pear tart, apple pastry and dried peach. Buttercream notes emerge on the long, spicy finish. Drink now through 2023. 91 points. Kim Marcus

  3. Judi Scherrer

    California GrapevineJune 2019

    Medium-light golden yellow; attractive, fragrant, floral, slightly buttery, citrus, apple, and peach cobbler aroma; medium body; rich, silky, green apple, pear, and stone fruit flavors with mineral notes, crisp, lemony acidity, and a bit tight on the finish; lingering aftertaste. Very highly recommended. My Score: 91 points. Nick Ponomareff

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