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My winemaking philosophy which I developed early on in my career is based on the concept that wine is a natural food. As such, the ultimate enjoyment of wine is as a graceful and harmonious accompaniment to a meal, whether it be simple or sublime.

While most of my wines are enjoyable by themselves, it is with food that they really shine, and reveal all of their nuances and textures. To me the best wines have the ability to bring out the best in the food they are paired with and conversely the food brings out the best in the wines.

2011 Chardonnay - 30th Anniversary
Sta. Rita Hills

2011 Chardonnay - 30th Anniversary

Technical Details

100% Chardonnay

Vineyard Sources:
58% Zotovich Vineyard
22% Rancho Santa Rosa Vineyard
15% Fe Ciega Vineyard
5% Rita's Crown Vineyard

Production: 80 cases
Alcohol by volume: 13.5%
pH: 3.22
Titratable acidity: 0.66 g/100ml
Cellaring potential: Three to five years
Bottle price: $30

I’m very pleased to release this special limited bottling of Chardonnay commemorating our winery’s 30th vintage. I thought it appropriate that this release should have the original label that we designed for our first vintage in 1982. The label features a hand-drawn border by my sister Linda and my signature in the center. 

This is a blend of all four Sta. Rita Hills vineyards we sourced fruit from in 2011. The grapes were picked at different times and fermented separately before being aged in French oak barrels, with this blend having just 16% new oak influence. The blend was bottled in late August 2012. 

The wine has a light to medium straw gold color. The aromas are of spiced pears and apples with a hint of caramel in the background. On the palate, the wine is light to medium bodied with elegant flavors of pears, apples and hints of citrus. The acidity is immediately evident upon tasting and lingers before ending with a long crisp finish. 

This is an elegant wine with subtle mineral-infused flavors and bright acidity. Had I been able to look into the future and taste this wine back in 1982, I believe I would have been very pleased that it represents the stylistic goals I set out to achieve, and that after 30 years we haven’t lost sight of them. 

Enjoy with mild seafood dishes, pastas, and chicken dishes.

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