The 2019 Syrah offers heady aromas of black cherry, blackberry, vanilla, sandalwood and fruit leather with a hint of smokiness. The palate is bold yet rounded, driven by flavors of blue fruits, plum and black cherry with gamy varietal notes. Velvety finish.
The 35-acre Brick Barn estate vineyard lies just north of the Santa Ynez River in a largely unexplored winegrowing corridor near the city of Buellton in the western Santa Ynez Valley. The 2017 Syrah finds harmony and complexity as a blend of two estate blocks—Block 8 (Clone 1), which produces dark fruit with robust tannins; and Block 14 (Clone 470) which yields a lighter character and red fruit tones. These blocks are planted along an upper highland at an elevation of 550 feet. Here, rocky loam and limestone soils provide ideal conditions for classic Rhône varieties. Persistent sun exposure ensures ripe flavors, while the Pacific Ocean—just 10 miles away—delivers daily cooling that maintains fruit acidity and structure.
After night harvesting, the fruit was destemmed and cold soaked for five days to initiate a gentle extraction of color and flavor. The wine was then fermented in small open-top bins and tanks, with two punchdowns and one pumpover performed daily for balanced extraction and aeration. In the classic Côte-Rôtie style, a small lot of whole-cluster Viognier (5%) was incorporated into the fermentation to intensify the color add lift to the aroma profile. After gentle pressing, the lots were settled and racked to French and American oak barrels, where they aged for 22 months. Sixty percent of the barrels featured new oak to accentuate the wine with hints of sweet spice and toasted oak.
French oak: subtle toasted oak flavors
American oak: more sweetness