Ruby red in colour, fresh fruit aromatics of mandarin orange, black raspberry and grilled watermelon spring from the glass. On the palate, pretty nuances of rose petal, gardenia and oolong tea mingle with herbal notes of sandalwood, star anise, fresh thyme and fennel seed. The mouthfeel is plush and velvety yet finishes with significant persistence and volume.
Food match: rack of lamb, roast pork, pasta.
When Ron Melville and his sons decided to develop their estate vineyards and winery in Lompoc, a prime area for growing cool-climate varietals, they recognized the importance of distinguishing this unique area within the valley. As such, the Melville family was heavily involved in the creation of the Sta. Rita Hills AVA, which was granted in 2001.
The climate here is significantly impacted by its proximity to the ocean (10 miles), consistent morning/evening fog, and steady afternoon winds. These cooling trends are not only perfectly suited to growing Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Syrah, but also serve to prolong the growing season, allowing for heightened varietal flavor intensity. Additionally, the area’s cool climate and calcareous rock and sand help produce grapes with natural acidity and flavor balance.
Awards: Vinous: 92 points, Parker: 92 points (superb value and outstanding quality)