Multiple Merry Edwards bottles side by side

Merry Edwards Wines

2016 Chardonnay Olivet Lane

Winemaker's Comments

Once again we were blessed with grapes harvested from the legendary Olivet Lane. Planted in 1973 to a Wente selection of Chardonnay, this vineyard is a benchmark for our region. The old vines self-regulate the crop they can support, creating dense wines of immense character. This wine always ferments at a leisurely pace. It spends a full nine months aging in French oak with lees-stirring done twice weekly. This progression builds upon the underlying fruit concentration, producing wines of stunning complexity.
The multidimensional aroma of this wine exhibits vanilla crème brûlée, fresh cardamom, crisp pink lady apple, yellow raspberry, tarte tatin and Peach Melba. Accents of Meyer lemon, olive, toasted hazelnuts and spicy oak create a composition of opposites.
The palate is full, round and creamy while at the same time, crisp and focused. It’s soft and plush, yet well balanced with the good acidity natural to Chardonnay grown in our own Russian River Valley. The opulent finish lingers on without diminishing, promising much for the future.
In Northern California, fresh Dungeness crab is one of winter’s fortunes, with peak catches coming from deep, coastal waters in December and January. My dear friend Ann Marie Montecuollo inherited this recipe for Connie’s Hot Crab Dip from her mother. It makes a sumptuous appetizer pairing with this rich Chardonnay. Check out our online recipe collection at for instructions on how to make this dish.

Critical Acclaim

93 points
"The old vines at Olivet Lane were planted to a Wente selection in 1973. They focus this wine’s complexity on savory scents of honeycomb. The fruit has the fresh intensity of grated lemon zest, opening with air to become toasty, heady and rich."
Joshua Greene, Wine & Spirits Magazine, October 2019
91 points
“The 2016 Chardonnay Olivet Lane comes from a site in the Russian River, and it offers a big blast of pineapple and spiced orchard fruits, with plenty of background honeysuckle and hazelnut characteristics. Medium-bodied, nicely concentrated, and elegant on the palate, it’s not a powerhouse yet has a beautiful spine of acidity that carries through the finish. It’s a beauty.”
Jeb Dunnuck,, June 2019
90 points
"Lacy flavors of apple pastry, pear and ripe citrus combine to offer a delicate richness. The creamy finish features dried sage notes."
Kim Marcus, Wine Spectator, May 2019


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In memory of Connie Montecuello
In Sonoma County, there was no winter crab harvest in 2015. So for Christmas Eve dinner, Merry created this new dish to replace her family's traditional crab pasta feast.
The rich creaminess of this soup mirrors our Chardonnay's lavish character while setting off its vibrant acidity.

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Release Card

2016 Chardonnay Olivet Lane