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Ritchie Vineyard

AVA: Russian River
Vineyard: Ritchie Vineyard
Winemaker: Jeff Ames
Cooperage: 10 Months French Oak, François Freres, Saury

Ritchie Vineyard – Farmed by proprietor Kent Ritchie since 1972, this vineyard produces wine of rare intensity and complexity. With old vines tucked into sloping bench lands that lead into the Russian River, the Ritchie vineyard lies in the heart of the Russian River Valley appellation. A great balance of cooling ocean fog and slightly warmer inland temperatures produce wines with intense, natural acidity with extra richness and lushness. Sandy Gold ridge soils combined with volcanic ash deposits provide great drainage while limiting vine vigor and yield.   

Russian River AVA – Centered on Sonoma County’s Russian River, this AVA set the standard for California Pinot Noir and Chardonnay varietals. Known for its characteristically cool climate, ocean influence blows through the Petaluma Gap, bringing foggy nights graciously soaked up by the vines. The central region of the Russian River AVA fosters ripe fruit with rich mouthfeel and bright acidity, producing some of the best Chardonnay in the world.  

Vintage Notes – 2019 was a remarkable growing season for most of Sonoma County with ample winter rainfall creating wet soil and cool temperatures. Spring and summer brought moderate to slightly above average temperatures, with late May rains helping to produce smaller clusters of flavorful and concentrated fruit. A strong, quality showing for Sonoma County. 

Wine Maker Notes – The elegant and complex nose of the 2019 Ritchie Chardonnay expresses ripe stone fruits, pear and sweet white floral notes. A creamy body, perfectly balanced with flavors of pineapple and citrus peel, greets the palate with a surprising depth and texture. Unfiltered and unfined, this Russian River gem has a minerality that leads to a long and memorable finish. 

Accolades – 2019 Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay 

Robert Parker Wine Advocate, 93 | Sourced from a terrific Sonoma vineyard, the 2019 Chardonnay Ritchie Vineyard is green-gold in hue and features complex aromas of crushed stone and shell, plus hints of lime, pear and honey. In the mouth, it’s full-bodied, round and mouth filling, with attractive flavors of white peaches and anise, then the wine turns lightly citrusy on the finish. Made from the Old Wente clone (more properly, selection), the grapes are whole cluster pressed, briefly settled, then go to barrel dirty. Uninoculated, it’s bottled without cold stabilization, unfined and unfiltered. 

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