Chanin Wines is dedicated to sourcing fruit from sites in California’s Santa Barbera County to create wines whose qualities reflect the individual vineyards in which these grapes are grown. There are no bottlings from blended sites at Chanin. The focus is on Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, which are very well suited to the cooler climate and diverse marine soils and long growing season that the region affords.
The wines are made by Gavin Chanin, whose father Tony had been involved in the establishment of the Zaca Mesa Winery in the Santa Ynez Valley in 1978. Gavin began as a harvest intern aged 18 at Au Bon Climat and Qupe under the guidance of Jim Clendenen and Bob Lindquist, both of whom had also been founders of Zaca Mesa. After periods in South Africa and New Zealand, and extensive travels to the vineyards of France and Italy, Gavin launched Chanin Wines in 2007. The wines are made in the same facility as Au Bon Climat and Qupe where Gavin continued to work as assistant winemaker after 2009.
A key at Chanin is to source completely heathy fruit, ideally from low yielding old vines. The fruit is typically picked quite early to preserve acidy and freshness. The fruit quality and age of the vines allows for making wines that avoid excessive alcohol and make unnecessary any additives – such as commercial yeasts or enzymes - that would compromise the faithful expression of the vineyard’s characteristics. To this end the wines are not filtered.
Gavin graduated from UCLA in 2009 as an award-winning art student. On each label you will find a piece of his artwork.
The 2018 Chardonnay Bien Nacido Vineyard is fabulous. Bright lifted and beautifully persistent the Bien Nacido has so much going on. There is a sense of translucency I find absolutely compelling. Bright saline notes give the Bien Nacido energy tension and drive. This is such a gorgeous wine. -- Antonio Galloni