Arista Winery has easily been one of the hottest American wineries in the last half decade and it’s no surprise why. With access to some of the state’s most elite vineyard sites up and down the coast, an estate right next to the legendary Sonoma winery, William Selyem and a scorching hot winemaker, Arista has established itself as a force to be reckoned with.
Winemaker, Matt Courtney had the incredible fortune of being the apprentice under the super famous, Helen Turley for eight years on her cult project, Marcassin. It’s there he learned how to make Burgundian varietals from one of the best– helping serve their allocation list and their 5000+ person waitlist!
The 2018 RRV Chardonnay is made with 15% New Oak to allow the terroir to take center stage. In terms of appellation wines, Jeb Dunnuck suggests that this is one of the best and tone that should be “snatched up” by readers. It offers fresh notes of Asian pear, Meyer lemon, ginger and lemongrass on the nose. On the palate, the wine has a “steely” lemony flavor paired with mouth-watering acidity giving it exceptional liveliness and balance.
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94 Points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
The 2018 Chardonnay Russian River Valley comes from declassified barrels from Arista’s single-vineyard program in addition to some purchased fruit. Made with about 15% new oak, the nose features toasty yellow apples, jasmine, honey and a streak of graphite. The satiny palate manages full, ripe fruits and fresh lift, finishing with great length and an alluring hint of matchstick.
93 Points, Jeb Dunnuck
Starting off with the appellation 2018 Chardonnay Russian River Valley from Arista, this smoking Chardonnay would be ideal for readers trying to understand the style of Arista as well as the overall quality of this estate. Offering up a light golden hue as well as a beautiful perfume of stone fruits, pear, honeyed minerality, and white flowers, it hits the palate with more medium-bodied richness, a round, supple, layered texture, beautifully integrated acidity, and one heck of a great finish. This is one incredible appellation Chardonnay that should be snatched up by readers.