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Sullivan Vineyard

Rows of grapes growing down a hill in Sullivan Vineyard
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The Dutton family’s 17-acre Sullivan Vineyard sits on a gentle north-facing slope at 200 feet of elevation in the Green Valley sub-appellation of the Russian River Valley. We are privileged to have access to these coveted 30+ year-old plantings of “Wente Selection” Chardonnay vines, strengthened by the area’s legendary Goldridge soil. The fruit from Sullivan Vineyard possesses a depth, ripeness, and balance that translate into a rich, luscious, and singular wine.

The Green Valley sub-AVA is an important area of the Russian River Valley and home to some of the region’s oldest and most coveted vineyards. Mineral-rich and sandy Goldridge soil is abundant in the area, harkening back to the region’s beginnings as an inland sea several million years ago. The climate is consistently cooler than that of surrounding areas, and Green Valley is unique in its protection from cold and misty coastal winds, allowing the daily fog to linger, limiting fluctuating temperatures throughout the day.

Grapes growing in Sullivan Vineyard
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Wente Clone

German immigrant C.H. Wente started from humble roots, but his foresight and ingenuity changed the entire California wine industry forever. Wente acquired cuttings of Chardonnay vines from a celebrated grower in Burgundy in 1912 and immediately planted them in his vineyard in the Livermore Valley, just east of San Francisco. Until that date, not a single vineyard was intentionally planted to Chardonnay in California. When his vines began to produce surprisingly delicious grapes, other local growers caught on quickly and began requesting cuttings from Wente’s vineyard for propagation throughout California. Today, over 100,000 acres of Chardonnay are planted in the state, and approximately 80% of those vines can be traced back to C.H. Wente’s first planting in 1912.

Green grapes growing off vines.