J Vineyards & Winery

The Essence of Russian River Valley Terroir

J Vineyards and Winery produces highly-acclaimed sparkling wines as well as varietal wines in Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley. As the daughter of Tom Jordan, founder of Jordan Winery, Judy Jordan was raised amidst the hustle and bustle of an influential rising star in Sonoma County’s wine industry. Rather than join the family business, however, she struck out to pursue a passion for sparkling wine and to establish the Russian River Valley as a premier location for sparkling wine. 

 With a foggy cool climate as well as a wide range of complex volcanic and alluvial soils, the Russian River Valley has been attracting vintners of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay seeking the holy grail of a perfect Burgundian terroir. The qualities are similarly advantageous for sparkling wine producers though not for quite the same reasons. Unlike the maker of still wines, the sparkling wine producer is typically not interested in capturing the essence of a particular vintage or vineyard but in creating a delicious and consistent house style. Blending the base wines (that will then be bottled with some sugar and yeast for the secondary fermentation) is key to the art. In early spring, the finished Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier wines from different vineyards will be sitting in dozens of tanks. From these lots, the winemaker will painstakingly assemble the base wines, possibly adding in some reserve wines from earlier vintages for additional complexity. J Vineyards, with 10 estate vineyards spread out across the AVA, is assured of a great diversity from which to assemble great and complex base wines. The cool climate of the Russian River Valley also offers J Vineyards an advantage because they can begin the harvest a bit later than in warmer areas and still get the high acidity and low sugar necessary for high quality sparkling wine. 

While J Vineyards started out as a sparkling wine producer, it became clear over time that, with so many vineyards in prime Russian River Valley locations, the opportunities for making distinctive varietal wines were there for the taking. Today only about 35% of J Vineyards’ total production is devoted to sparkling wine with the rest divided between single vineyard and blended bottlings of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris. 

Wine Maker

Melissa Stackhouse

Country

USA

Region

California


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Wines from this Winery


2021 J Vineyards & Winery California Pinot Gris

A true Californian, J Pinot Gris combines the crisp, fresh and floral qualities of Italian Pinot Grigio with the richer and rounder texture of an Alsace Pinot Gris. Bursting with white peach, golden kiwi, and nectarine the wine balances pure fruit aromatics and flavors with acidity and mineral structure. The fruit is sourced from a combination of warm and cool locations – Lodi, Clarksburg and the Russian River Valley. Made entirely in stainless steel and without malolactic fermentation, the wine is ready to enjoy now - over lunch, as an aperitif, or with a light evening meal. The acidity and bold flavors will pair well with Couscous salad, Thai chicken skewers, chèvre cheese, or sashimi.

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¥3,960 (incl. tax)
2019 J Vineyards & Winery Russian River Valley Chardonnay

In crafting this exquisite Chardonnay, J Vineyards draws upon two key advantages of Sonoma’s Russian River Valley. One is the cool climate that extends the growing season, allowing the grapes to become fully ripe. The other is soil. Volcanic eruptions, colliding tectonic plates, and the river’s transport of rocks and dirt, from Mendocino in the north to the ocean in the west, have left the Russian River Valley with more diverse soils than almost any other Californian AVA. By sourcing grapes from multiple locales, J Vineyards can blend together lots with distinctive flavor and mineral profiles into a Chardonnay with excellent balance, structure, and complexity. Aromatic fruit, bright flavors, refreshing acidity, and a creamy texture hit the sweet spot. The winery suggests a pairing of lemon risotto topped with crispy confit chicken or miso-glazed black cod over cold sesame soba noodles. A semi-firm sheep cheese would be excellent as well.

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¥6,820 (incl. tax)
NV J Vineyards & Winery

J Vineyard’s signature sparkling wine is made for celebrations – whether a special occasion or just life itself. The classic grapes of Champagne are here: Chardonnay (49%), Pinot Noir (49%) and Pinot Meuniere (2%), sourced from a range of Russian River Valley vineyards that suffuse the wine with a spectrum of complex fruit flavors and mineral notes. Bubbles stream up into a golden mousse, giving the wine a creamy and elegant texture. Think fresh fruit served atop cinnamon toast and drizzled with wild honey and you get an idea of the flavors that await.

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¥7,590 (incl. tax)
2019 J Vineyards & Winery Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is well-known for being able to pick up and express subtle differences in microclimate and soils. Therefore, with access to estate-owned and grower vineyards at several locations in the Russian River Valley, the team at J Vineyards can craft an appellation wine that’s bright, aromatic, and deeply layered. No less than 40 individual lots, wines representing unique vineyard blocks or clones, went into crafting this complex and pleasing wine. The wine opens with dark cherry, plum, and ripe raspberry, while hints of earth, cocoa, and clove add depth and nuance to the smooth, layered palate. This juicy and nicely-textured Russian River Pinot would pair well with pork tenderloin stuffed with dried fruit and rosemary. 

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¥8,580 (incl. tax)
NV J Vineyards & Winery Brut Rose

Even unopened, the sleek, clear glass bottle filled with luminous cool pink wine is a conversation piece – just the thing to get a party started. But in the glass is where this fruit-driven and full-flavored sparkling wine really shines. A blend of 64% Pinot Noir, 34% Chardonnay and 2% Pinot Meunier, this Rosé has substantial body and concentrated red fruit flavors but plenty of acidity and a clean finish. Three years aging on the lees has given the wine a toasty, fresh-baked bread character that recalls Champagne. 

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¥9,020 (incl. tax)
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