Bien Nacido Estate Chardonnay 2017  Front Label
Bien Nacido Estate Chardonnay 2017  Front LabelBien Nacido Estate Chardonnay 2017  Front Bottle Shot

Bien Nacido Estate Chardonnay 2017

  • WE96
  • TP94
  • RP93
  • JD92
  • W&S91
  • WS90
750ML / 12.6% ABV
Other Vintages
  • WE95
  • JD92
  • W&S91
  • RP94
  • WE94
  • WE94
  • WE94
  • RP92
  • WE93
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4.9 6 Ratings
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4.9 6 Ratings
750ML / 12.6% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Bien Nacido Estate Chardonnay always carries a more tropical tone of fresh pineapple, bright acidity and a notable spice from their limited use of oak.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WE 96
Wine Enthusiast

Delicate and yet laser-focused on the nose, this tremendous bottling from a historic property offers wet chalk and exotic lime aromas. There is a great grip to the tense palate, where a chalky texture delivers flavors of toast, white peach and a light brush of butter. It's clean and crisp yet consequential.

TP 94
Tasting Panel
The aromas of lanolin and vanilla wafers grab you and hold you, urging on to a tightrope of acidity that stretches across the mouth, teetering on edgy. Crispy and vibrant with flavors of dried sage, cashew, and lime. Brioche notes lengthen the finish
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2017 Chardonnay Bien Nacido Vineyard comes from own rooted, 45-year-old vines planted in shale. It's youthfully coiled and very minerally on the nose, with just-ripe aromas of quince, Bosc pear, citrus blossom, baker's yeast and saline plus hazelnut and toasty notions. Medium-bodied, it has a slightly rounded texture, intense fruits and great minerality, supported by tangy acidity and finishing long and textured.
JD 92
Jeb Dunnuck
The 2017 Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley is a racy, juicy effort that has loads of salted citrus, grapefruit, and white flower aromas and flavors. With medium body, good acidity, and a clean, balanced style, this racy effort is going to put on weight over the next year or two and keep for upwards of a decade.
W&S 91
Wine & Spirits
From vines planted on sandy shale soils in 1973, this racy chardonnay is a study in tartness, with notes of lemon-spritzed green apple and green almonds, laser-like acids and an assertive, lean texture. It should age well, though it’s also delicious now, with mussels.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Smoky richness envelops the well-structured pear, apple and ripe tangerine flavors, backed by crisp acidity. Jasmine and honeysuckle notes show on the finish. Drink now through 2024.
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Bien Nacido Estate

Bien Nacido Estate

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Bien Nacido Estate, California
Bien Nacido Estate Winery Video

In 1969, brothers Bob & Steve Miller, the fourth generation of a Central Coast California farming family, found a piece of land they instantly knew had vineyard potential. Formerly used for grazing, it was part of one of the earliest Spanish land grants. However, the shale soil and unique climate from the transverse mountain range provided a lens into its potential.    

The vineyard was planted in 1973. Bob and Steve called it Bien Nacido, meaning “well born” in Spanish, because of the passion and commitment they shared in bringing it to life.   

All the wines are naturally fermented, with no sulfur additions until after malolactic has completed. The wines are never filtered or fined, and only the selections which represent the best expressions make it into the bottles.

 The original adobe on the property remains as one of the few privately maintained adobes in California.  


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Santa Maria Valley Wine

Central Coast, California

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A lesser-known but elite AVA within the larger Santa Barbara district, the Santa Maria Valley AVA runs precisely west to east starting near the coast. The valley funnels cool, Pacific Ocean air to the vineyards more inland, allowing grapes a longer hang time to ripen evenly and achieve their full potential by harvest time. Combined with minimal rainfall, consistent warm sunshine, and well-drained soils, it is an ideal environment for grape growing.

Many of the wineries here are small and highly respected, having established a reputation in the 1970s and 80s for producing excellent Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. More recently, Syrah has also proven quite successful in the region. Many vineyards are owned by growers who sell their grapes to other wineries, so it is common to see the same vineyard name on bottlings from different wineries. Bien Nacido Vineyard is perhaps the best-known and most prestigious.

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.

SWS943679_2017 Item# 592463

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