Complicated Red 2018
: Primarily French oak with a small amount of American oak
Inviting aromas of ripe red fruit are complemented by fresh flavors of cherries and strawberries, accented with sweet, spicy oak tones. The wine is opulent yet balanced with a soft palate and a smooth, rounded, supple finish.
The base of this wine is Grenache sourced from a vineyard planted on the valley floor of the Arroyo Seco riverbed. The cool coastal influence of both the Arroyo Seco and Salinas River Valleys results in a longer growing season, which combined with the region’s abundant sunshine, produces fruit with dark, complex flavors. The balance of the wine is Syrah from two certified sustainable vineyard sites planted on benchland west of the Salinas River Valley, where Monterey Bay fog rolls in later in the day and retreats earlier in the morning, allowing for the warmer temperatures needed to ripen Syrah.
The 2018 Monterey County growing season started out relatively cool, with lower than average rainfall. A brief heat spell in March helped bloom along, and normal conditions resumed. Another warm spell in October pushed the ripening of the fruit, resulting in a harvest that was slightly earlier with a larger crop than 2017.
The Grenache was cold soaked for 24 hours before being fermented with a yeast strain selected to preserve the naturally elegant aroma bouquet of the fruit. The wine was pumped over three times a day for six days before being pressed off and undergoing malolactic fermentation. The Syrah also underwent extended skin contact, deepening the color and aromatics, before fermentation with a yeast that enhances the fruit characteristics while adding complexity and spice aromas. The lots were gently pumped over three times a day to accentuate the berry aromas inherent of fruit from these two vineyards. Both varietals were aged in primarily French oak and a small amount of American oak, in a mix of newer and neutral barrels in order to preserve the varietal characteristics while adding a subtle frame. Lots were then chosen for the final blend.
Food Pairing Notes
Aromas of raspberry, blackberry and violets, framed with subtle nuances of tobacco and cedar box, are followed by flavors of dark cherry, raspberry preserve and chocolate. On the palate, the wine is medium-bodied with a pleasing acidity and clean finish, making it an exceptionally food-friendly wine.
COMPOSITION: 69% Grenache, 31% Syrah