After three summers of drought, the vines woke up extra early in the spring of 2015. Cool bloom-time temperatures led to light set and a small crop throughout California. Summer temperatures remained moderate, offering slow and measured ripening. Most of the Syrah came in about a week ahead of normal, with one block trailing two weeks behind. The fruit had very pronounced flavors, and we knew from the start this would be a great vintage.
A small and ripe vintage, the 2015 displays an aromatic burst of blueberry, plum, sun-dried strawberries, along with notes of leather, and violets. On the palate are juicy, dark fruits, white pepper, and wet earth, all backed by a vibrant acidity. The soft tannins in this wine are complemented by a touch of “grit” provided by the small percentage of Petite Sirah blended into it. Two years in barrel have softened the palate and added aromas of vanilla, cedar, and clove.
The fruit cold-soaked for 24-hours and was inoculated with yeast the next morning. Pumping over the Syrah was adjusted in duration and frequency, depending on taste and yeast activity (one to three times per day). The ferments were pressed off between two and four brix and then returned to tank. Once dry, the wine was racked off lees and inoculated for malolactic fermentation. MLF was done in tank and barrel, and upon completion, racked into barrel for 20 months.