Sonoma Magazine

Meet & Greet – David Ramey, Ramey Wine Cellars, Russian River Valley

He's produced wine at Simi, Matanzas Creek and Chalk Hill wineries, and Dominus and Rudd Estate, all of which benefitted from his experience gained at Moueix family's famed Château Pétrus in Bordeaux, France.

Yet David Ramey found his final winemaking home in Healdsburg, with Ramey Wine Cellars, where he produces spectacular Chardonnays from Russian River Valley, Sonoma Coast and Carneros, sturdy Syrahs from Petaluma Gap, and Cabernet Sauvignons from Napa Valley.  Two of his are in our Top 100 – the 2012 Ramey Ritchie Vineyard Chardonnay and the 2012 Rodgers Creek Syrah – although other Ramey wines could have easily made our list.

In 2013, Ramey and his wife, Carla, purchased Westside Farms in the Russian River Valley, their first owned vineyard; additionally Chardonnay and Pinot Noirs are in the pipeline from this site on Westside Road.

Ramey is one of California's most cerebral and science-based winemakers (his graduate degree thesis was on volatile ester hydrolysis, or how aromas evolve in wine), but also had the marketing smarts to start Sidebar Cellars, a line of lower-priced wines (around $25) that includes a bright and racy Russian River Valley rosé, Lake County Sauvignon Blanc and unusual Kerner white wine from Lodi.

The Rameys' daughter, Claire Ramey-Pejovic joined the winery in 2013 and has brought youthful savvy and energy to the business.  Her brother, Alan, is a new addition to the team.

– Linda Murphy

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