Santa Cruz Mountains
Ridge produced its first Monte Bello Chardonnay in 1962, from fourteen-year-old vines on the estate vineyard. In 1985, when other vineyards on the ridge were included, the designation was changed to Santa Cruz Mountains. In 1999, using estate-grown grapes only, we again produce a Monte Bello. These four parcels were harvested in late October, whole-cluster pressed, barrel fermented, and held on their lees through a natural malolactic fermentation. In August, the wine was racked off and combined. After additional aging, it was bottled—without filtration—seventeen months after vintage. Superbly typifying Monte Bello’s cool climate and fractured limestone sub-soils, this is one of the finest chardonnays we have ever made.
Three separate chardonnays are made from vineyards on the ridge: Monte Bello, Santa Cruz Mountains, and Coast Range. We select the most intense—and most typical of Monte Bello’s distinct character—for the first. The second is similarly structured and complex, but may include fruit from vineyards neighboring our own. The third is softest, and most immediately accessible.
Average Rating: 89.9
No. of Tasting Notes: 29
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