Arista Winery

California: Russian River Valley, United States

Chardonnay, Banfield Vineyard, Russian River Valley — 2020

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  • Vineyard Profile

    • The Banfield Vineyard Chardonnay comes from the northern edge of the Green Valley, a sub-appellation of the Russian River Valley. The location of this vineyard is ideal for growing Chardonnay due to the cooling influence of coastal fog. This dry farmed vineyard was planted in 1980 to the Wente Selection of Chardonnay, a highly prized selection of Chardonnay know for its small, loose clusters and intensely flavored grapes. The 30+ year old vines are rare in the Russian River Valley and produce lower yields per acre. What’s lost in tonnage is more than compensated for in flavor and quality as is evidenced through the wines produced year after year. The combination of site and vine age represent a truly unique and distinct vineyard that we are proud to work with.

    • Vineyards: Banfield Vineyard
    • Vine Age: 40 years
    • Clones: Wente Selection
    • Soil: Well-drained, sandy, Goldridge
  • Vinification

    • Cold grapes arrive at the winery early in the morning after having been picked at night. Grape clusters are sorted by hand and gently transferred as whole clusters directly into our press to undergo an extremely gentle press cycle lasting 3-4 hours. From the settling tank, the juice is moved to 60-gallon French oak barrels, where fermentation is allowed to occur naturally using only native yeast that come in from our vineyards. Limited battonage is used during the first 2-3 months of fermentation in order to encourage the development of a healthy yeast population. Once fermentation is safely underway the wine is not disturbed until the fermentation is complete, which typically takes about 10-11 months. Final blends are assembled and gently racked to stainless-steel tanks for about 4-6 months.

    • Aging: Approximately 11 months fermentation and aging in barrel followed by 4-6 months in stainless steel.
    • Filtration: Unfiltered
    • Fining: Unfined
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
    • Alcohol: 14.1%
  • Tasting Notes

    • The 2020 Banfield Vineyard Chardonnay is open and delicious directly out of the bottle. Classic Banfield notes of candied citrus and caramelized sugar are present in abundance. As the wine opens up, more exotic elements of kiwi and grilled pineapple become apparent. A citrus-inflected minerality gives the finish a tangy lift and keeps things lively and balanced.



  • Banfield Vineyard Chardonnay, Russian River Valley — 2020 – Wine Advocate – 94 Points

    “The nose is shy to begin, taking time to offer peach, citrus blossom and beeswax perfume. The medium-bodied palate pairs expansive, gently honeyed fruit with focused acidity that drives the layered finish.”

  • Banfield Vineyard Chardonnay, Russian River Valley — 2020 – Wine Advocate – 94 Points

    “Elegant and composed, with perfectly ripe Bartlett pear, yellow apple and citrus zest at the core. Delicate, balanced and extremely nuanced.”

  • Banfield Vineyard Chardonnay, Russian River Valley — 2020 – Vinous – 90 Points

    '"The 2020 Chardonnay Banfield Vineyard is quite airy and understated. White flowers, pear, spice and a touch of tangerine oil are nicely lifted. Medium in body and impeccable in balance, the 2020 is very nicely done."