Twenty-five years seems like yesterday. I cherish the memory of bottling our first Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay - the 1982 vintage - in a modest metal barn that served as our Lakeport winery.
What joy we had introducing the wine to visitors, many of them from my San Francisco law firm. Only later did we establish a more formal tasting room in a converted shed near the winery. It featured a big oak plank laid over two upturned wine barrels.
As I traveled the coastal regions of California during the early 1980s searching for the "perfect chardonnay vineyard," I found a few special places that produced extraordinary grapes with distinctive character and flavor. Tepusquet in Santa Barbara County, La Reina in Monterey County, and Les Pierres in Sonoma County were three of those special vineyards that became the backbone of Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay.