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Palmina Larner Vineyard Malvasia Bianca 2014

Malvasia from Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
  • WE91
  • RP90
12% ABV
  • RP92
  • WE92
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12% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Night jasmine, citrus blossom, kaffir lime and crisp honeydew waft from of the glass fooling you into thinking the wine could be sweet. Instead, the wine is taut and cleanses your palate with flavors of fresh mandarin, Meyer lemon curd and a subtle brininess on the finish that leaves you craving another sip.

The 2014 has even more brightness and acidity than previous vintages and so we decided to pair this with an extremely simple dish — oysters with a mignonette. The wine cuts through the brininess on the finish while adding a slight creaminess. This also pairs well with fresh crab, curries, herb infused beurre blancs and Thai inspired dishes.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Honey, concentrated orange blossoms and very ripe jasmine flowers make for a sweet-smelling, nearly treacly nose on this dynamic bottling by Steve Clifton. And in the magic that is this Italian grape, the palate is bone-dry, with touches of lemon balm, lemon verbena and white flower petals. It's unique, interesting and tasty.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
I always love this wine, and the 2014 Malvasia Bianca does nothing to change my opinion. Incredibly perfumed, with lemon, orange marmalade, honey, chamomile and exotic flowers, it's one of the most singular wines coming out of California. Fresh, medium to light-bodied, elegant and lively, try it with some cheeses at the start (or end) of a meal.
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Palmina, Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
Palmina is more than a winery. It is a philosophy, a passion and a strongly held belief that wine is an extension of the plate, a component of a meal and a means to bring people together. Formed by winemaker Steve Clifton in 1995, Palmina is named in honor of Steve’s great friend Paula. Like a grandmother to him, she taught Steve to love cooking, wine and the Italian lifestyle and was a spark in his life. After Paula succumbed to breast cancer, Steve found that her given name on her Italian birth certificate was Palmina, and the winery was thus fittingly named. Palmina produces a full range of wines crafted from Italian varietals grown in Santa Barbara County, California. Palmina is not trying to emulate the Italian versions of those wines, but rather translate the history of those grapes to the growing conditions and vineyard sites of the very unique characteristics of Santa Barbara County. The wines are Italian by inspiration with flavors rooted in Santa Barbara, and all are intended to be a delicious component of a meal.

Santa Ynez Valley

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Ranging from cool and foggy in the west to warm and dry in the east, the Santa Ynez Valley is a climatically diverse growing area. The most expansive AVA within the larger Santa Barbara County region, Santa Ynez is also home to a wide variety of soil types and geographical features. The appellation is further divided into four distinct sub-AVAs—Sta. Rita Hills, Ballard Canyon, Los Olivos District and Happy Canyon—each with its own defining characteristics.

A wide selection of grapes is planted here—more than sixty different varieties, and counting. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir dominate in the chilly west, while Zinfandel, Rhône blends, and Bordeaux blends rule the arid east. Syrah is successful at both ends of the valley, with a lean and peppery, Old-World sensibility closer to the coast and lush berry fruit further inland.


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Persistent jasmine aromas coupled with ripe tropical and stone fruit flavors are pervasive in many wines that call themselves Malvasia. Both grape and name are far-reaching. Over 20 different varieties grow throughout Italy, Spain, Greece and other countries.

But variations on the name itself are plentiful too. There are actually approximately 70 registered grapes with Malvasia as part of their name or listed as a synonym for Malvasia. Some think that the actual name, Malvasia, stems from the Italian mispronunciation of Monemvasia, a southern Greek port. The French call it Malvoisie, the British say Malmsey and the Germans call it Malvasier. In any case, Italy has more forms of Malvasia than any other country. Most popular are Malvasia Bianca di Candia from Lazio, Malvasia di Candia Aromatico, which is planted widely and the red-skinned Malvasia di Casorzo from Piedmont. The list goes on.

Mainly known as a white grape, wines made from some type of Malvasia are adored for their spicy, fruity and exotic floral aromas, coupled with an assortment of fruits on the plate and a fresh zippy finish, whether bone dry or carrying any sort of residual sugar.

PMAPA14MALV_2014 Item# 167589