Arista Winery

California: Russian River Valley, United States

Chardonnay, Russian River Valley — 2020

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  • Vineyard Profile

    • The Russian River Valley Chardonnay blend combines our old vine plantings, ideal growing conditions and unique terroir producing a wine that demonstrates the full potential of the Russian River Valley appellation. The combination of vine age, site and winemaking produce a profound wine that provides great insight into the vintage and appellation each year.

    • Vineyards: Flora Marie, El Diablo, Ritchie, Banfield, and the Arista Estate Vineyards
  • 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: 14.2%
  • Tasting Notes

    • An exceptional snapshot of the 2020 vintage in the Russian River, this release is a blend of barrels from five Russian River Valley sites: Flora Marie, El Diablo, Ritchie, Banfield, and Arista’s Westside Road Estate. With contributions from some of the finest Chardonnay vineyards in the appellation and made with slightly less new oak than the vineyard designates, this cuvée offers the highest level of early drinkability in the Arista portfolio while maintaining an extraordinary degree of quality. Notes of lemon curd, candied oranges, and white flowers are joined by notes of baking spices and caramelized sugar. A touch of flinty reduction and a citrus-inflected acid backbone keep the finish fresh and lively



  • Russian River Valley Chardonnay — 2020 – Wine Advocate – 95 Points

    “Inviting and ready to drink, with white peach and pepper aromas accented by touches of green herbs and beeswax on the nose. The full-bodied palate has a creamy texture and is loaded with peachy flavor, and it finishes with fresh acidity and nutty nuances.”

  • Russian River Valley Chardonnay — 2020 – Wine Spectator – 93 Points

    ‘Offers lemon sherbet, salted butterscotch and lemon blossom notes that are fresh and aromatic, with a seamlessness to the supple texture and fresh acidity. Reveals a touch of vanilla crème anglaise and fresh, fleshy nectarine notes that linger on the long finish.”