Grenache & Syrah Napa Valley 2014
About This Wine
On the nose: balance of tobacco, roses with hints of granite, cherries, geranium leaves with touches of roast beef, cigars, vanilla
On the palate: fresh entrance with grenadine, rose, red meat with touches of fresh plum, cranberry, cherry, mango
Blend: 60% Grenache, 40% Syrah
Fermentation: 80% Tank, 20% Neutral Oak
Aging: 12 months
2014 was a dream vintage, with quality along the lines of 2012 and 2013. Everything ripened in early- to mid-August, including Cabernet Sauvignon, which usually ripens much later.
Napa Valley's harvest was unusually early, not surprising given the state’s ongoing drought, which was so extreme that the cover crops in many vineyards never took hold. Substantial rain in late February and early March relieved most of the stress and set the vines up for a vigorous start. "Early" was the key word all season, from budbreak to veraison to harvest.
The vintage proved to be a balance between 2012 and 2013. We had some heat spikes that delayed the phenolic ripeness and forced us to push extraction quite hard. The ripeness was there, but the color and tannins really took time to come out. Our 2014 red wines are powerful but with great structure. Patience was the key to this vintage.