The Wines of Faith Armstrong-Foster, Part 2 of 3


2014 Onward Petillant Naturel of Malvasia Bianca Suisun Valley

Faith in an interview for “I was not actually thinking about doing one for harvest 2013, but I heard that there was a vineyard that had Malvasia Bianca available and the idea intrigued me. I drove to the site and the moment I tasted the fruit my heart took over, the Petillant Naturel bells went off in my head and I knew there was no looking back. I said to a friend “the grapes made me do it” and it is true. I just got excited and started running, which in the end was probably key; if I had taken the time to stop and think it through I might have reconsidered. This wine was such a journey to make, I feel the Malvasia Bianca comes shining through with the bounty of floral aromas and yet, the fermentation esters that were captured in bottle add complexity and layers, creating a sensory journey that is reminiscent of her path. The stunning natural acid is a wonderful balance with the floral nose; night blooming jasmine, citrus blossom, melon rind, warm Kefir lime scones. This, my friends, is my fifth child and it is fair to say that she kept me up at night just as much, if not more than, some of my children. She was a logistically challenging wine to make, but I still have all ten fingers and toes and my heart has grown bigger!”

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Faith delicately pressed whole clusters into a tank to settle for a long period of time to allow the wine to be as clean as possible. She racked and allowed the temperature to rise gradually to 55 for a steady fermentation. She finished the fermentation by lowering the temperature back down to 50 degrees and then racked one more time. She bottled the wine while it was still releasing CO2 from the fermentation to create natural fermentation.
– Lulu McAllister