melville winery Current Releases
Chardonnay Sta. Rita Hills
100% estate fruit from the Sta. Rita Hills. It is a combination of clones 4, 76, and 95, along with Mount Eden, Hanzell, Hudson, Wente and Melville selections. Melville’s Chardonnay is planted predominantly on the west side of their estate where they have several different types of sandy soils. Because the west side receives the brunt of brutal ocean-winds and has only poor soils, they feel our chardonnay always captures the vibrancy, minerality, and concentrated flavors that are hallmarks of thje Sta. Rita Hills appellation.
Fruit was harvested by hand then gently whole-cluster pressed, cold settled overnight and transferred by gravity to barrel for fermentation in neutral French oak barrels (10 to 20 years old), with zero malolactic and sur lie aging without any lees disturbance.
Chardonnay Clone 76 Inox
The inspiration for Inox was born out of a pursuit to capture the essence of both the vineyard and varietal in their purest form. This specific wine originates from a 1.8 acre block of clone 76 on the west side of Melville’s vineyards planted on extremely sandy soils.
Inox, a French term for stainless steel, continues to prove a suitable title for this wine, whose purity and precision dictate such a designation. Upon immediate pressing, the juice is transferred into two small stainless steel tanks with fermentation lasting three months at an average temperature of 45°F. Cold temperatures are employed to capture and enhance the fruit’s delicate nuances. The subsequent cold storage also prohibited the onset of malolactic fermentation. The wine then remained on its lees without any disturbance for five months before being bottled in late March.
Pinot Noir Sta Rita Hills
100% estate fruit from the Sta. Rita Hills. It is a collection of 16 clones.
40% of the fruit was fermented as whole-clusters with 60% gently de-stemmed in small (1.5 ton) open-top fermenters. Total skin and stem contact averaged 30 days (7 day cold soak, 2 + weeks of fermentation and 1 + week extended maceration). From the press, the wine was transferred directly into neutral barrel (10+ year old French oak), where it remained sur lie without sulfur until June, when it was gently racked for the first time and prepared for bottling in August.
Pinot Noir Block m Sta Rita Hills
Block M is a windswept mesa on the west side of Melville's estate lying adjacent to their Terraces block. Sitting atop a sun exposed mesa with several feet of botella clay soil, the extremity of Block M is enhanced by the gravitational pull on three exposed sides forcing the roots to search deeper for sustenance. Block M is made up of equal amounts of clones 114 and 115. The lesser known 114 is lush, velvety and textural with an elegantly pliant internal core, while clone 115 delivers fruit at a higher pitch coupled with a more structurally pronounced personality. The marriage of these complementary components is what make Block M so complete.
25% of the fruit was gently de-stemmed with 75% remaining as whole clusters.
Pinot Noir Sandy's Sta Rita Hills
The Sandy’s block is named in honor of Ron Melville’s sister and was deliberately planted on the extremely sandy northwest section of their east vineyard. Sandy’s has performed heroically over the years particularly when considering its extreme location combined with the poor, well-drained soils of this section. This block also contains clonal material representative of Melville's new era of plantings and includes selections from Merry Edwards, Calera (Clone 90), and clones 459 and 114. These four selections, when planted on sand, produce wildly intense and pretty aromatics with a very ethereal and harmonic palate impression.
The fruit is fermented in small (1.5 ton) open-top fermenters. Total skin and stem contact averages 30 days. From the press, the wine is transferred directly into neutral French oak barrels (10-20 years old) where it remains sur lie with no sulfur until June, when it was gently racked for the first time and prepared for bottling in December. 30% stem inclusion.
Pinot Noir Anna's Sta Rita Hills
Named for the grandmother of a longtime family friend, Anna’s Block is an eight acre parcel that was planted in 2001 on a gentle southern slope in the northwestern portion of their westside vineyard. The rows are planted in a north-south orientation which means the fruit hangs from east-west allowing for even ripening. Anna’s block is planted to two different Dijonnaise clones of Pinot Noir that work well in tandem and bring a great amount of synergy and cohesiveness to the resultant wine.
A third of the fruit was gently de-stemmed with remaining as whole clusters.