Château Montelena rose to worldwide fame after the château won first prize in the white wine category for their chardonnay at the Judgment of Paris in 1976. Since then, it has been one of the most iconic wineries in the United States.
In 1882, Alfred L. Tubbs purchased a 103-hectare estate at the foot of Mount Saint Helena. His goal was to produce top-class Californian wines. He built a castle and that's how A.L. Tubbs Winery was created in 1888. The ban on alcohol in America caused many difficulties, and this almost meant the end of the company. After the repeal of the ban on alcohol, his grandson Chapin changed the name to Château Montelena. Shortly after, the winery was sold to a couple from Hong Kong, but it was Jim Barret who really became the face of the château after they handed it over to him. Under his rule, Montelena managed to achieve cult status.
After many years, the vineyards have been recognized as world class. The land is cultivated using organic viticultural methods to keep the soil and the land as productive as possible. The winery is an official Napa Green Certified Winery and the vineyards have also received this classification. The plantings consist of Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Riesling, Petite Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc and Zinfandel.
All wines undergo minimal aging in wood. Even the Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc are aged briefly in French oak or Acacia wood. Cabernet Sauvignon wines undergo the longest barrel aging: 22 months in French oak barrels. The Zinfandel is aged in a combination of French, Irish and American wood. This makes each and every one of the wines special, each with its very own style.
1976 is by far the most legendary vintage of Château Montelena, thanks to the victory in the Paris Tasting!Read more