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February 2022- New Wine Releases

February 2022- New Wine Releases

2021 SAUVIGNON BLANC

Retail: $30

GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE100% Sauvignon Blanc
Coqulicot, Nolan, La Presa, and Valley View vineyards in Santa Barbara County.
TECHNICAL SPECSpH: 3.39
Acidity: 6.1 g/L
Alcohol: 14.3%
2 months in Stainless Steel
TASTING NOTESBoisterous nose of white peach, guava, dried pineapple, and melons on this easy-drinking wine. Grapefruit notes are prominent on the palate with character of pear, agave nectar, passionfruit and white orchids and a pleasant, long-lasting finish.
WINEMAKINGThe grapes for the Sunstone 2021 Sauvignon Blanc were hand harvested from four vineyards in two Santa Barbara County AVAs (Santa Ynez Valley & Alisos Canyon). We received the fruit from each vineyard within 3-10 days of each other. We then whole-cluster pressed each of the lots, fermented them, pressed the juice separately, and blended them together as they were finishing the last stages of fermentation. Our winemaker’s yeasts of choice were a combination of MSB and Ba11 which allows for a more fragrant aroma and characters of silky vanilla, tropical fruit, and stone fruit which helps to round out the overall mouthfeel on the palate. The wine was sent through partial malolactic fermentation (approx. 50%) to reduce the malic acid sharp acidity. Our “four vineyard blend” of Sauvignon Blanc was aged in stainless for two months before being bottled to 804 cases on December 10, 2021.
FOOD PAIRINGSeasoned Pork Loin “twice roasted”, glazed with spicy red pepper quince pear jam, and topped with apples slowed cooked in white wine, coconut bourbon sugar, thyme, garlic, sesame seeds, lemon pepper and lemon verbena.
CELLARINGThe 2021 Sauvignon Blanc can be enjoyed now and for the next 12-15 months. It is not a candidate for long term aging.
2020 SAUVIGNON BLANC RESERVE

Retail: $45

GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE100% Sauvignon Blanc
Refugio Ranch Vineyard & Valley View Vineyard, Santa Ynez Valley
TECHNICAL SPECSpH: 3.38
Acidity: 6.1 g/L
Alcohol: 14.4%
2 months in Stainless Steel

TASTING NOTESMature wine with a subdued nose of pineapple, honeydew, Iris flower, and various stone fruits. Softening acidity on the palate with pear, grapefruit and citrus character leading to a supple, sustained finish.
WINEMAKINGThe grapes for Sunstone’s 2020 Sauvignon Blanc Reserve were hand harvested from two vineyards in Santa Ynez Valley. We received the fruit from each vineyard within 3-6 days of each other. We then whole-cluster pressed the lots, fermented the juice separately, and blended them together. Our winemaker’s yeast of choice was Ba11 which allows for a more fragrant aroma and characters of tropical fruit, grapefruit, kiwi berry, lemongrass, and white floral aromas. The wine was sent through partial malolactic fermentation (approximately 98%) to reduce the malic acid sharp acidity. Our “two vineyard blend” of Sauvignon Blanc was then aged in 100% stainless steel for two months before being bottled to 219 cases in January 2021.
FOOD PAIRINGHerbed Butter Pan Seared Scallops w/ lemon pepper, lemon juice, garlic, lime basil, cinnamon basil, with a sprinkle of saffron and smoked paprika over a bed of arugula tossed with Tuscan orange olive oil.
CELLARINGThe 2020 Sauvignon Blanc Reserve can be enjoyed now and for the next 6 months. It is not a candidate for long term aging.

 

2019 EROS

Retail: $80

GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE76% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon
Sunstone Estate Vineyard
TECHNICAL SPECSpH: 3.74
Acidity: 5.0 g/L
Alcohol: 14.8% 26 months in 30% new and 70% neutral French oak
TASTING NOTESDecadent nose of blackberry, fig, and huckleberry with warm notes of cinnamon stick and anise and a subtle sweetness. Perfect balance of acidity and tannins on the palate with dark fruit character, cedar, vanilla and coffee notes, and a lasting finish.
WINEMAKINGEros is our flagship Right Bank Bordeaux-inspired blend, named after the Greek god of love, and made of fruit entirely from six blocks of the Sunstone Estate, including Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. The grapes for the 2019 Sunstone Eros were hand harvested from from each block separately within 16 days in October 2019. We then crushed the fruit to tank, and barrel aged them in 30% new French oak.


Our winemaker’s yeasts of choice were BM45, D80 and RC212 which accentuate more dominant characters such as dark berry, bright fruit, fruit leather, black pepper, licorice. The combination of these yeasts produces additional textures and characters as the wine is going through fermentation and retains the true chemistry of the phenolics of the wine while brightening the fruit, spice, and clarity of the characters as it ages in the oak tannin. Our oak barrels are specifically sourced per wine tier that Sunstone produces, which adds an additional layer to the wine’s texture, character and aroma depending on the special char of the barrel (cooper, oak forest, char type) that is sourced.

As we created our trial blends we tasted through each merlot, cabernet franc and cabernet sauvignon block and blended to taste by layering these separately fermented varietals from vineyard terroir, fermentation, specific casks chosen to make this flagship right hand crafted 2019 vintage. This Eros was sent through full malolactic fermentation (approximately 98%) to reduce the malic acid sharp acidity.

Our “six block blended wine” was aged in 30% new French oak casks and 70% neutral French oak barrels for 20 months before being bottled to 814 cases on December 10, 2021.
FOOD PAIRINGSpicy & Smoked orange peel, molasses, brown sugar, thyme Cabernet Franc-glazed spareribs w/braised mustard carrots, dill baked peas, and shredded parmesan over mustard or micro greens.
CELLARINGThe 2019 Eros can be enjoyed now and may be enhanced for up to an additional 10-15 years if stored in proper conditions.

 

2020 PINOT NOIR RESERVE

Retail: $65

GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE100% Pinot Noir
Spear Vineyard, Sta. Rita Hills
TECHNICAL SPECSpH: 3.79
Acidity: 5.6 g/L
Alcohol: 14.6%
15 months in 25% new/75% neutral French oak
TASTING NOTESIntriguing aromas of plum, fresh strawberry, and brown olives with underlying chalky and earthy notes. Medium acidity on the palate with cherry, plum and blackberry character and warm notes of almond brittle, cloves and mixed berry cobbler. Soft tannins and a lingering finish.
WINEMAKINGThe grapes for the Sunstone 2020 Pinot Noir Reserve were hand harvested from Spear Vineyard in the Sta. Rita Hills AVA of Santa Ynez Valley. We received the fruit from three blocks of the vineyard on three separate dates in September 2020, comprising three different clones (777, 667, Pommard). For each Pinot Noir clone our team crushed the fruit to tank, fermented them each individually to give the highlights of the wine separate characters to later infuse together as a blend, then pressed to tank to settle and racked to barrel. We barrel aged them in 25% French oak casks in three individual lots for seven months before blending. Our winemaker’s yeasts of choice were BM45, RA17, and BRL97 which accentuate the common characters such as spices, licorice, cherry fruit, cedar, and dark berry, and helps to retain the true character and complexity of the varietal itself. The Pinot Noir was sent through full malolactic fermentation to reduce the malic acid sharp acidity. This “single vineyard blend” of Pinot Noir was aged in 25% new French oak for 15 months before being bottled to 244 cases on December 9, 2021.
FOOD PAIRINGTuscan-style Stuffed Portobello Mushroom with pork belly, truffle goat cheese, grape tomatoes, garlic, basil, shallots, and arugula drizzled with blood orange balsamic glaze.
CELLARINGThe 2020 Pinot Noir Reserve can be enjoyed now and for up to an additional 6-9 years if stored in proper conditions.

 

2020 petit verdot reservE

Retail: $65

GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE100% Petit Verdot
Valley View & Pear Valley Vineyards
TECHNICAL SPECSpH: 3.96
Acidity: 5.9 g/L
Alcohol: 14.4%
13 months in 25% new/75% neutral French oak
TASTING NOTESFloral and earthy on the nose with notes of blueberry, blackberry, and raspberry and a hint of marzipan. Dark fruit abounds on the palate, framed by chocolate, truffle, smoky, and spicy character with bright acidity preceding the long finish.
WINEMAKINGThe grapes for the Sunstone 2020 Petit Verdot Reserve were hand harvested from vineyards in Santa Ynez Valley and Paso Robles. We received the fruit from each vineyard within 3 days of each other in October 2020. We then crushed the fruit to tank, co-fermented two vineyard lots together and blended the Paso Robles Petit Verdot into the final blend before bottling. We barrel aged them in 25% new French oak and 75% neutral French oak. Our winemaker’s yeasts of choice were D80 and RC212 which accentuate the more dominant characters such as dark berry, bright fruit, plum leather, dark tropical fruit, black pepper, and licorice. The combination of these yeasts produces additional textures and characters as the wine is going through fermentation and retains the true chemistry of the phenolics of the wine while brightening the fruit, spice, and clarity of the characters as it ages in the oak tannin. The Petit Verdot was sent through full malolactic fermentation (approximately 98%) to reduce the malic acid sharp acidity. Our Petit Verdot blend was aged in 25% new French oak casks and 75% neutral French oak barrels for 13 months before being bottled to 465 cases on December 10, 2021.
FOOD PAIRINGCajun Shrimp Steak wrapped w/ Smoked Paprika Thyme, Honey Glazed Bacon, Served w/ White Truffle Herbed Butter Over Crispy Brussel Sprouts and Roasted Vegetable Melody.
CELLARINGThe 2020 Petit Verdot Reserve can be enjoyed now and for up to an additional 5-8 years if stored in proper conditions.

 

2020 GRENACHE

Retail: $45

GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE100% Grenache
Black Oak, Rancho Del Prado, La Presa, El Camino, and Spear vineyards
TECHNICAL SPECSpH: 3.69
Acidity: 5.7 g/L
Alcohol: 13.8%
14 months in 20% new/80% neutral American oak
TASTING NOTESPleasant aromas of red fruits, hibiscus flower, and plum bookended by spicy notes of anise, cloves, and pink peppercorn. Black licorice and peppercorn character on the palate accented by notes of cherry, raspberry, and dried cranberries.
WINEMAKINGThe grapes for the Sunstone 2020 Grenache were hand harvested from five vineyards in three AVAs in Santa Barbara County (Santa Ynez Valley, Sta. Rita Hills & Alisos Canyon). We received the fruit from each vineyard within 3 days of each other. We then crushed the fruit to tank and fermented two of the vineyard lots together and three of them separately. This was done to have diversity in the yeast to nutrient profile so the juice to wine chemistry created layers of characters and textures throughout its process. We barrel aged them in 20% new American oak casks, in four individual lots for seven months and then blended them to merge the characters together before bottling. Our winemaker’s yeasts of choice were BM45, RC212, and D80 which accentuate common characters such as sweet spices, licorice, bright fruit, cedar, and earthy soil. It also helps round out a heavier mid-palate for the longevity of the texture sensations. The blend was sent through partial malolactic fermentation (approximately 60%) to reduce the malic acid sharp acidity. Our “five vineyard blend” of Grenache was aged in 20% new American oak for 14 months before being bottled to 567 cases on December 8, 2021.
FOOD PAIRINGSlow-cooked barbequed short ribs with chipotle orange spice basil fennel marinade, topped with huckleberry and ginger chutney served with black truffle mashed potatoes.
CELLARINGThe 2020 Grenache can be enjoyed now and for up to an additional 4-8 years if stored in proper conditions.

 

2020 PetitE SIRAH

Retail: $45

GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE86% Petite Sirah/14% Syrah
Refugio Ranch & La Presa Vineyards (Petite Sirah); Sunstone Estate Vineyard (Syrah)
TECHNICAL SPECSpH: 3.36
Acidity: 7.5 g/L
Alcohol: 15%
14 months in 15% new American oak; 5% new French oak, and 80% neutral French oak
TASTING NOTESAromatic nose comprised of red and dark fruits, chocolate covered raisins, salty pistachio, and graham cracker. Juicy palate with cherry, boysenberry, and chocolate habanero character and notes of coffee and tobacco leading to a rich finish.
WINEMAKINGThe grapes for the 2020 Petite Sirah were hand harvested from three vineyards, including the 14% Syrah from the Sunstone Estate. We received the fruit from each vineyard within 3 days of each other in October 2020. We then crushed the fruit to tank, co-fermented two vineyard lots together, and blended the Syrah as the final blend before bottling. We barrel aged them in 15% new American oak casks and 5% new French oak. Our winemaker’s yeasts of choice were D80 and Rhone 4600 which enhance more dominant characters such as strawberry, rhubarb, licorice, bright fruit, strawberry leather, and tropical fruit. It also helps round out the complexity of a typically rich, high acid, high tannin red for the longevity of the texture. The Petite Sirah was sent through semi-full malolactic fermentation (approximately 90%) to reduce the malic acid sharp acidity. Our “three vineyard blend” of Petite Sirah/Syrah was aged in 15% new American oak casks and 5% new French oak, for 14 months before being bottled to 170 cases on December 9, 2021.
FOOD PAIRINGSpicy shredded chicken mole with Spanish rice and crème fraiche pesto topped black beans & baked plantains.
CELLARINGThe 2020 Petite Sirah can be enjoyed now and for the next 3-5 years if stored in optimal conditions.