By Virginie Boone
Sparkling wine is right for every night, but for New Year’s, it’s de rigueur. Thankfully we’re brimming in good bubbles here in Sonoma County, so don’t be afraid to explore. Take that exploration up a notch by choosing a vineyard-designated sparkling wine, which’ll highlight who farmed the grapes and where.
Made in a Brut Nature style from estate vineyards, this is a bright, fruit-forward and fun bottling that remains balanced in the glass.
Made from Chardonnay from the Sanchietti Vineyard in Russian River Valley, this wine is a great example of the fruit from that AVA with its vibrant and citrus aromas. Fruit forward and enhanced by the fine mousse and dosage, this bubbly has perfect acidity.
From an estate site on the Sonoma Coast, this is a blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that’s lush and lengthy.
This non-vintage sparkling wine incorporates estate Chardonnay from 2019 and 2020 from Dry Creek Valley for a lengthy and vibrant wine.
Winemaker Kathleen Inman has always made her wines from her estate Olivet Grange Vineyard (OGV); this is the first to blend in grapes from Jim Pratt’s Irwin Lane Vineyard as well, blending 28% Irwin Lane Chardonnay with the majority of OGV Pinot Noir. With very little residual sugar, it sings in sharp acidity and crisp fruit notes of apple and strawberry.
All of Iron Horse’s wines come from its certified-sustainable Green Valley of Russian River Valley estate, a cool, foggy site steeped entirely in Gold Ridge soils. This wine is comprised of 77% Pinot Noir and 23% Chardonnay and given three-plus years en tirage. The winery will give $5 of every bottle sold to Redwood Empire Food Bank.
Made from 54% Chardonnay and 46% Pinot Noir from Russian River Valley, this sparkling wine reflects the depth of flavor gained from seven years en tirage. Although not a vineyard designate, this delicate sparkling is described by J Vineyards & Winery as “the pinnacle” of their sparkling portfolio.
The producer’s Freestone estate provided the 78% Chardonnay and 22% Pinot Noir grapes that go into this bottling, aged en tirage for 46 months. It is highly textured, nuanced and full of tension.
From its cool, windswept site fully exposed to the Petaluma Gap, this is made from Chardonnay grapes grown on its La Cruz Vineyard, which sits at the bottom of the property rich in minerals formed by ancient sea beds.
While not vineyard-designated on the label, this wine is made from Chardonnay grapes grown at Gap’s Crown, Dutton Ranch-Mill Station and by the Sanchietti family. It is aged in stainless steel and a hint of neutral barrel and is dry, rich and round.
Texture’s inaugural Blanc de Blancs made from 100% Chardonnay offers a glimpse of Champagne from the coastal hills of Sonoma. The only sparkling wine made from Lucky Well Vineyard in West Sonoma Coast, the Blanc de Blancs is made in the Méthode Traditionnelle style. With the vineyard sitting above the fog line at 1,000 feet, it is uniquely positioned to encourage optimal acid retention and flavor development.
Photo by Keller Estate Wines