Charles Smith is a self-taught winemaker who grew up in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains near Sacramento. He left America to pursue a career as a rock band manager and travelled for many years in Europe where he fell in love with fine wine. When it was finally time to come home he decided to pursue this new passion and found his own wine label using only the finest quality fruit from Washington State.
Smith’s first vintage was 1999 when he made just 330 cases of Syrah. Since then he’s been recognised as one of Washington State’s finest winemakers, and has even been named Winemaker of the Year by both Food & Wine Magazine and Wine Enthusiast. Smith’s Sixto wines were inspired by Mexican-American musician Sixto Rodriguez’s story of finding stardom in South Africa despite his early albums bombing in the US. Instead of music this time Charles Smith has discovered abandoned vines in need of resurrection, which he uses to make this superb Chardonnay.
The Uncovered cuvee is composed of fruit from three single vineyards, Frenchman Hills, Moxee and Roza Hills, grown at high elevation in cool climate conditions. The must is fermented with wild yeast in a combination of concrete tanks and barrels. It’s then left to mature in the barrels for 17 months on the lees to add a rich, creamy texture and delicate toast, caramel, vanilla and woodsmoke notes to the luscious tropical and stone fruit core.