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2014 Syrah Signature Anna's
Anna's Estate Vineyard
 
91 pts - Connoisseurs' Guide
$60.00
$720.00
 Case of 12

Deeply colored and densely fruited this masculine wine exhales textbook aromatics of blueberries, smoke and bacon which are reconfirmed in the fleshy, savory flavors of blackberries, salami, leather, lightly spiced with black pepper.

91 points - Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine.
"Unbridled in its richness and as ripe as it can be without quite crossing the line into late-harvest excess, this extravagant, richly oaked look at Syrah somehow manages to keep very solid, spicy varietal character within its sights and never abandons fruit in the face of its all-encompassing ripeness. It is absolutely mouthfilling stuff and holds nothing back, and, if sure to be criticized in some quarters as being a little too much, it will delight big-flavor fans who believe that it is impossible to have too much of a good thing."

Tasting Notes

Syrah is an especially good fit for our northwest corner of the Paso Robles AVA, known as the Adelaida District. Rated as a Region II-III in the Winkler Heat Summation Index this mountainous, coastal influenced sub-AVA is closer to France’s northern Rhone, considered the ideal climate for this variety. The stress of low-fertility calcareous soils and the yin and yang of extreme temperature swings gives Syrah precision and definition not found in warmer regions. The Signature label identifies best sites and a “best barrel” selection from this steep, sun exposed vineyard. Additional refinements to our sustainable farming employs deficit irrigation, mid-season pruning and shade cloth, extending the ripening cycle and increasing phenolics. Harvested at night over 2 weeks in September, the fruit was hand sorted, de-stemmed, allowed a short cold soak and co-fermented with 5% Viognier in concrete vats on indigenous yeast. Following a period of maceration on the skins the “free run” was moved to a combination of new and neutral French oak barrels (various sizes) for 18 months.

Professional Reviews

91

Food Pairings

Vineyard Notes

A dedicated collection of Rhône grape varieties, Anna’s mountainous 48 acres are divided between six red varieties, planted between 2001 and 2004 along a steep south facing ridge, and 4 lower elevation white varieties planted in 2007. Red varieties benefit from ideal sun exposure and exhibit the nuanced flavors of their elevated mountain site in Paso Robles' Adelaida District. At between 1,595 and 1,935 feet in elevation, the red varieties lie on an extreme 30 degree slope rooted in devigorating calcareous shale sub soils. At 14 miles from the Pacific Ocean, the afternoon marine air flow accentuates a dramatic 40-50 degree diurnal temperature cool down. The white varieties lie at the lowest point of the vineyard, 1,595 feet, which promotes a pooling of the cool air. All vines, on drip, are planted on lime tolerant rootstock using a vertical shoot training system. Vine spacing is 4 feet between vines and 10 feet between rows, 1,089 vines/acre. Yields are maintained at 2 tons/acre. Vines are ENTAV certified, the 15 acres of Syrah being a diverse selection, divided into 5 vineyard blocks.

Vintage Notes

The 2014 vintage, was a classic vintage for the region and was characterized by its overall consistency. After a warm and dry winter that marked a third consecutive year of drought, the vines woke a month early from dormancy with buds pushing out in mid-February. The 3rd year of low rainfall added a measure of stress to the vines contributing to low yields and enhanced skin phenolics. All to the good for producing wines of depth and density.

Summer followed with a few heat spells that led us to begin harvest on August 12, a full month earlier than the historical average, and finished late September—when we typically are still bringing in Pinot Noir.

As a whole, the wines from the 2014 vintage are loaded with fruit and are very generous, approachable, and drinking well now. They have good weight,  great length, and show the potential of our estate vineyards. The 2014 vintage wines are in stark contrast to the 2013 wines, which were very tight in their infancy and are only now, three years later, beginning to show their depth. 

Stay tuned—customer wine reviews coming soon.
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