The Estate Chardonnay is made up of 100% estate fruit, of varying clones (4, 76, and 95) grown on the western edge of the Melville property on sandy soils. The vines were planted in 1997 and due to the site's proximity to the ocean influence, Melville prides its estate Chardonnay in possessing the hallmark characteristics of Sta. Rita Hills, with an elegant concentration of fruit and gripping minerality. After a manual harvest, the fruit is whole-cluster-pressed and cold settled overnight. Then the wine is transferred to neutral French oak barrels ranging in ages between 10 and 20 years. The wine undergoes zero malolactic fermentation and is aged sur lie with no stirring of the lees.
Aromatically this wine jumps from the glass with grilled lemons, fresh honeysuckle, and crunchy green pears. On the palate the wine is intriguing, full of ginger, kumquats, dried of straw and toasty notes. The palate is slightly oily which is cut with striking acidity and leaves a bold finish.