A REBIRTH OF THE VINES AND OUR LIVES
Spring has sprung! Last week we had our first “bud break” in the vineyard, which signals the rebirth of the vines as they come out of winter hibernation and start their annual growth cycle. This year in particular, we view this natural phenomenon as a metaphor for our greater world. The “rebirth” in this case is the light we can see at the end of the pandemic tunnel. With our governor announcing that our state should return to something resembling normalcy by June 15th, we are looking forward to picking up where we left off before our world changed a little over a year ago.
Specifically, we plan on re-opening indoors as soon as we are permitted, and we are excited about debuting some new tasting spaces for you to enjoy. We have also begun planning a full schedule of events for the second half of the year, including the possible return of our annual STOMP member event after a hiatus in 2020.
In the meantime, let’s talk about your next wine shipment! For Reserve Club members, the May release is a favorite. In addition to Rapsodie, our signature Rhône-style “GSM” blend, this shipment includes our only white varietal grown on the Estate (Linda’s Viognier), our revered Estate Syrah, and the cellar-worthy Founder’s Reserve. Read below for more details on all of the wines in your upcoming release!
Thank you again for your continued support. We look forward to seeing you at the Estate soon. Cheers!
WINES INCLUDED IN THIS SHIPMENT:
2020 LINDA’S ESTATE VIOGNIER (MIXED CLUBS ONLY)
|GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE||100% Viognier|
Sunstone Estate Vineyard
|TECHNICAL SPECS||pH: 3.38|
5 months in a combination of neutral & new French Oak
|TASTING NOTES||Estate-grown bottling with an elegant nose full of tropical and citrus notes, and hints of chamomile, lemon balm and honeycomb. Round on the palate with notes of vanilla, apricot, cedar, and lemon meringue, and white grapefruit and passionfruit on the finish.|
|WINEMAKING||The 2020 vintage of our only Estate white was hand harvested from our Sunstone Estate in Santa Ynez Valley. The grapes were whole cluster pressed, and the juice were transferred to a chilled tank for three days, then inoculated/fermented with a French Rhone style yeast for a duration of 8-days. The wine remained in stainless for one month before being transferred to oak barrels, then it was racked off lees/sediment into two new American Oak barrels while the remaining was racked to neutral French Oak barrels for five months.|
Our 2020 Viognier Estate Linda’s Vineyard was aged in 45% new oak for three months before bottling to 104 cases in March 2021.
|FOOD PAIRING||Asparagus, Fig, Italian Cheese, Marinara Sauce, Basil, Prosciutto Tartlets|
|CELLARING||The 2020 Linda’s Viognier can be enjoyed now and for up to an additional 3 years if stored in proper conditions.|
|GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE||59% Grenache, 29% Syrah, 12% Mourvedre|
Sunstone Estate vineyard, and Roblar and Coquelicot vineyards
|TECHNICAL SPECS||pH: 3.56|
17 months in neutral French oak
|TASTING NOTES||An abundance of dark fruit on the nose, including notes of blackberries, black plums, boysenberries and fresh figs, with underlying hints of chocolate and espresso. On the palate, fruit character is supplanted by notes of cherry cola, tobacco, and almonds before culminating in a smooth finish.|
|WINEMAKING||The Syrah, Grenache, and Mourvedre fruit for the 2019 Rapsodie was hand harvested from three vineyards within a five mile radius of Sunstone, all of which practice organic farming. The fruit was harvested in the morning and then crushed/de-stemmed into a chilled tank as separate lots. We blended the components of this wine in June 2020. The blend and its lots were in barrel for 17 months before being bottled to 586 cases in March 2021.|
|FOOD PAIRING||Italian Beef Braciola (rolled stuffed meat, in sauce), a Southern Italian dish slow rich simmered tomato sauce with beef, prosciutto, garlic, herbs.|
|CELLARING||The 2019 Rapsodie can be enjoyed now and for up to an additional 4-8 years if stored in proper conditions.|
2019 FOUNDER’S RESERVE
|GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE||82% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc|
Sunstone Estate Vineyard (Blocks A, B, C and H)
|TECHNICAL SPECS||pH: 3.72|
16 months in 25% new/75% neutral French oak
|TASTING NOTES||Dark and brooding aromas of plum, blackberry, coffee bean and brown olives interlaced with spicy notes of cinnamon sticks, cloves, and red peppercorns. Bold fruit and spice on the middle of the palate with notes of caramel, cedar and black licorice with well-integrated tannins and a rich, lingering finish.|
|WINEMAKING||The Merlot (A, B, C blocks) and Cabernet Franc (H Block) fruit was hand harvested from Sunstone’s estate vineyard at an average of 26 brix/sugar, with a variety of harvest dates from the end of October through early November 2019. As we hand-picked these varietals per block, they were crushed, de-stemmed, cold soaked for up to four days before being inoculated with yeasts & nutrients to take over the natural fermentation from the grapes' yeasts as they initiated the starting point of the fermentations. The fermentations ranged 8-12 days. We sent each wine to barrel, racked them off the lees two months later in January 2020 and blended them by June 2020. The wine was bottled to 168 cases in March 2021.|
|FOOD PAIRING||Filet Mignon with sweet, smokey, spicy tomatoes habanero chutney with baked portobello mushrooms stuffed with spinach, ricotta, parmesan and garlic.|
|CELLARING||The 2019 Founder's Reserve can be enjoyed now and for the next 10-15 years if stored in optimal conditions.|
2019 SYRAH, ESTATE
|GRAPE BLEND & SOURCE||100% Syrah|
Sunstone Estate Vineyard
|TECHNICAL SPECS||pH: 3.76|
17 months in 20% new/ 80% neutral French oak
|TASTING NOTES||Enticing aromas of red fruit, including cherry, rhubarb, and goji berries, lifted by floral rose notes. Balanced palate featuring red and black berries enhanced by spicy notes of anise, black pepper, and clove.|
|WINEMAKING||The Syrah, Estate fruit was hand harvested from Sunstone’s estate vineyard at 23.6 brix/sugar, early October 2019, in the morning and then crushed/de-stemmed into a chilled tank.|
As we hand-picked these varietals per block, they were crushed de-stemmed, cold soaked for up to two days as we then inoculated with yeasts and nutrients to take over the natural fermentation from the grapes' yeasts as they initiated the starting point of the fermentations. The fermentations were 12 days, we sent each wine to barrel, racked them off the lees two months later in January 2020 and blended the two Sunstone blocks by June 2020. Our Syrah Estate was aged in 15% new American barrels and 85% neutral French/American Oak barrels for 17 months. Bottled to 367 cases in March 2021.
|FOOD PAIRING||Honey Mustard Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Potatoes and Garlic Broccolini|
|CELLARING||The 2019 Estate Syrah can be enjoyed now and for up to an additional 6-8 years if stored in proper conditions.|