2021 Gregory Graham Chardonnay, Sangiacomo Vineyard, Carneros-Sonoma, California

2021 Gregory Graham Chardonnay, Sangiacomo Vineyard, Carneros-Sonoma, California



Gregory Graham has been producing wine in Northern California since the mid-1980s, including two stints at Rombauer where he returned as the Winemaker in 1988.  There he established Rombauer’s reputation for Chardonnay, sourcing fruit from the cool Carneros region in Napa and Sonoma.  While still working at Rombauer Greg and his wife Marianne purchased a 13-acre Zinfandel vineyard in the Red Hills of Lake County.  He replanted half the vineyard to Rhone varieties and made his first commercial wine under his eponymous label in 2004.  A winery followed in 2006.  Fast forward to 2021 and Gregory Graham produces about 3500 total cases annually.

After nearly 25 years of experience producing Chardonnay for other wineries, Gregory Graham’s reputation for classic California Chardonnay proceeds him.  He continues to have tremendous success producing his own Chardonnay from the sustainably farmed Sangiacomo Vineyard in Carneros-Sonoma which has been a source to many wineries since the 1960s. The fruit is selected from the older established blocks of this expansive vineyard.  Each block was separately hand-harvested, pressed in a basket press, and then fermented in one third each new barrels, one-year barrels and older barrels in a cold (50º F) storage area.  After primary fermentation the wine was inoculated for a second, malolactic fermentation and aged on its lees for nearly nine months, with the yeast lees gently stirred bi-weekly.  Curiously the wine is much similarity to Rombauer’s signature lush and buttery, tropical fruit style!   This 2021 vintage has just been released and is a value when compared with other like styled wines.

Lovely vanilla and slightly toasted aromas.  Ripe pear, peach and “fruit cocktail” flavors on the palate.  Lengthy finish tapers off with noticeable residual fruitiness.  We suggest trying with spicy Asian cuisine.  Gregory Graham recommends pairing his Chardonnay with baked gnocchi in gorgonzola cream sauce, and butternut squash bisque.


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