2015 Riva Ranch Chardonnay

2015 Riva Ranch Chardonnay

“Our Riva Ranch Single Vineyard Chardonnay is a beautifully rich, yet balanced California-style Chardonnay that represents what the Arroyo Seco appellation has to offer. In addition to classic Chardonnay flavors of apple and pear, Arroyo Seco fruit consistently provides aromas and flavors of tropical and stone fruits. 90% barrel fermented, this is a distinctly robust and full-bodied Chardonnay perfectly balanced with ample acidity and ripe fruit character.”

- Karl D. Wente, Fifth Generation Winemaker


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For five generations our family has been dedicated to the art of winemaking and to the philosophy that the quality of a wine originates in the vineyard. Our Riva Ranch Single Vineyard Chardonnay is sourced exclusively from our Riva Ranch Vineyard in Arroyo Seco, Monterey. Arroyo Seco, where we have been growing grapes since the 1960’s, is widely regarded as one of the best places in California to grow Chardonnay. The cool growing season with the deep gravelly soil ripen the Chardonnay perfectly which gives natural balance of sugar and acidity.

Recognized as “California’s First Family of Chardonnay”, the Wente family was the first in California to produce a varietally labeled Chardonnay in 1936 made from our celebrated Wente clone. Today, most of the great Chardonnay vineyards in California are planted with the Wente clone, which originated from our family’s estate over 100 years ago.

We farm the following clones for our Riva Ranch Single Vineyard Chardonnay: 2A, Clone 4, Dijon clones 95, 96, 76 and Old Wente Heritage Clones. Each clone offers different flavors, textures and aromatics to the final blend.


To complement the rich fruit flavors, we barrel ferment about 90% of this wine in a combination of 60% new and 40% second use French and American oak barrels which adds notes of vanilla and spice and a softer, fuller mouthfeel. 10% is stainless steel fermented, preserving the natural vibrancy of the fruit.


The wine undergoes 100% malolactic fermentation and is barrel-aged sur lie for 8 months. Batonnage, the art of stirring the barrels, is performed every two weeks. This adds a creamy note to the wine and enhances texture and mouthfeel.

2015 Riva Ranch Chardonnay