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The Lion has been the emblem of the Hess Family in every generation, and it has come to symbolize the bold and persevering nature of founder Donald Hess and our winery home on Mount Veeder. As the next generation takes the helm, The Lioness pays homage to the women of the Hess Family who now lead the pride. This Chardonnay blends the abundance and power of Napa Valley with an agile touch of winemaking to showcase the estate fruit. Budbreak began on schedule at the end of February, and Spring brought moderate temperatures that progressed into a warm Summer without any disruptive heat spikes. Steady, consistent growing conditions provided the perfect environment for the fruit to mature and develop. Our grapes promised elegant flavors of the highest quality with structural beauty from balanced tannin, sugar and acid levels. As the moderate, even temperatures continued into the Fall, harvest started slightly later than normal, and in some areas, extended long into the first week of November. With such lengthy hang time, the fruit matured consistently and was picked when it was at its peak, promising exceptional flavor in bottle. 2018 proved to be a welcome blessing with our team grateful for the ease of harvest, generous yields and outstanding quality.