2018 Ramey 'Ritchie Vineyard' Chardonnay Russian River Valley

(Net Item - no discounts apply)

A gorgeous minerality drives this Chardonnay from first swirl to final swig, accompanied by hints of green melon, lemon pith, white flowers and wet grass. Growing out of the shyness of youth, more stone and apricot notes are showing up on the long finish of this medium-bodied, silky Chard.

David Ramey is one of the true aces of winemaking in California. While he had an established track record at Matanzas Creek, Chalk Hill and Dominus, we first got to know him well during his stint at Oakville’s Rudd Estate, where he helped take the project into the stratosphere with his work in the vineyard and cellar. In 1996, he and his wife Carla launched Ramey Wine Cellars, which has since become phenomenally successful on the strength of David’s rare winemaking skill. Ramey is a classicist and a Burgundian at heart; his wines are pure, frank, and unmanipulated. The Chardonnays go straight from the press to the barrel, and undergo malolactic fermentation and lees-stirring in barrel. The quality here is first-rate, and will appeal to lovers of great French wines.

David Ramey
12 months
Oak Treatment:
15% new French oak barrels
Sonoma County
Russian River Valley
Ritchie Vineyard
Total Varietal Composition %:
100% Chardonnay
Alcohol %:
Score Wine Advocate:
Score Wine Enthusiast:
Score Wine Spectator:
SKU #:
750 ml Bottle

Wine Enthusiast

From older plantings on a wide-spaced site—one the producer has worked with for some time—this wine is complicated and wild, combining rich, elegant flavors of salty sea breeze with ginger and lemon puree. Seamless and supple, it has a backbone of structure and lively acidity that pair effortlessly with the apple and pear.


Wine Spectator

This complex white is layered with a lively mix of fresh-cut Gala apple, Asian pear and tangerine flavors that are well-knit. A minerally freshness lingers with buttery hints on the richly spiced finish. Drink now through 2027.


Jeb Dunnuck

Always one of the standouts from Ramey, the 2018 Chardonnay Ritchie Vineyard is no exception and has a Grand Cru Burgundy nose of chalky minerality, exotic flowers, brioche, and assorted stone and orchard fruits. These all carry to a medium to full-bodied Chardonnay that's concentrated, has a structured mouthfeel, integrated yet bright acidity, and a great finish. It will be best with 2-4 years of bottle age (it's delicious even today) and will drink well over the following decade if stored properly.


Wine Advocate

The 2018 Chardonnay Ritchie Vineyard is wound up at this early stage and will require at least 2-3 years to blossom in bottle. The nose offers pure lilac, beeswax and apricot perfume with honeyed undertones, while the silky, fresh, mineral-driven palate gains amplitude on the long finish. 767 cases were made.