Chien Wines P.O. Box 2952 Lompoc, CA 93438

Our Wines

As much as we love a well crafted bottle of red wine, our true loves are rare, aromatic whites which are too often underappreciated. Traditional barrel driven California Chardonnays were the mainstay of the white wine diet of America for many years. Slowly, other white varietals started sharing Chardonnays spotlight, some more deserving than others. We were introduced to dry and off-dry Rieslings and Gewürztraminers a long time ago and loved the sharp, mineral and metallic qualities of the wines. Alsace styles naturally led us to Austria, and Grüner Veltliner which has since become our favorite varietal to explore.

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After harvest of 2006 we decided to start making a small batch of a traditional Alsatian blend. We sought out fruit and found Riesling, Pinot Blanc and a small amount of Gewürztraminer from select vineyards in Santa Barbara County. The blend is called Edelzwicker which loosely translates to “noble pinch”. Our Edelzwicker has the slightest hint of residual sugar, balanced with just the right amount of acid, to give it our noble “pinch”.

Our first vintage from 2007 was so much fun for us to make. We started with 1.3 tons of Pinot Blanc from Bien Nacido Vineyard and 2 tons of Riesling from Camp 4 vineyards. Each batch was picked under 24 brix and fermented separately in stainless steel tanks. This wine has never seen oak barrels. Our belief is that ‘in order to express the purest varietal characteristics, and preserve the quality of a white wine, it must be made in stainless steel.’ We bought a few gallons of Gewürztraminer and added it to the final blend.

Back by popular demand, we are re-releasing a very small amount of the 2007 Edelzwicker from our library. This wine is showing beautifully and we are excited to share it. There is a 3 bottle maximum per order.

Bottled in early February 2008, the Edelzwicker will show best in 3-5 years, it is meant to be a graceful ageing wine, with a long life ahead of it. The wine is mind blowing right now, but still only showing a hint of the grace it has the potential of. 212 cases produced.

Continuing in the style of our 2007 blend, comes the 2008 Edelzwicker, this time with equal proportions of Riesling and Pinot Blanc, both harvested around 23.2 brix from the same vineyards we used in 2007. Separately fermented in stainless tanks, and masterfully blended with 20% Gewurztraminer we harvested from Alisos vineyards. Bottled early February of 2009, this is a slow ager. Expecting to last well over a decade with intense fruit expression, the wine is showing fantastically now, and will continue to gain complexity over the next 4-6 years... and beyond. 278 cases produced.

Grüner Veltliner:
Our original goal for Chien was to produce the best Californian Grüner Veltliner possible. In 2009 we had our first opportunity, and are excited with the results. Coming online with the 2011 vintage we will have a second vineyard source for the Gruner, in a slightly cooler climate which we expect will raise the bar a notch.

At long last the much anticipated 2009 Gruner Veltliner! We are proud to present the first ever produced in Santa Barbara county and third ever in the state of California. The fruit comes from a vineyard called Evergreen just north of Los Olivos, CA. Harvested at 24 brix, and vinified in the Chien style with a slow cool stainless fermentation and bottled late February of 2010. Still a baby, this wine is already showing the tell-tale characteristics of classic Grüner; white pepper, sea spray, and light flowers. Highly ageable, expect the peak around 5+ years in bottle. 320 cases produced.


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