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Spring Release Russian River Valley Syrah

Winemaker’s Notes

I find this to be our finest RRV Syrah to date. The wine has a kaleidoscopic range of aromas and flavors that really sets it apart. It’s the qualitative equal of our designate wines that will be released this fall. A run of three warm days in early October brought a flush of ripeness in these three vineyards, yet the nights remained cool so the fruit was able to retain all its complex aromatic character. The dominant portion of this blend from the dark red volcanic soils of Greywacke Vineyard really bring a unique soil-driven iron-like quality to the wine. A thread of white and black pepper and floral violets constantly weaves through the wine both aromatically and as a flavoring component. That’s the heart of the wine and the secret to its complexity. The flavors are precise, not too heavy, not too fruity but brimming with diverse layers. It’s an exciting, delicious and highly delineated wine that never lets up.

Soaring multi-dimensional aromatic complexity that is really quite dramatic. Violet, dark cassis, graphite and dried herbs. Bright peppery component with mint and a red volcanic character. Simultaneously fragrant and red-fruited but with a brooding inner dark power. Focused, granular tannins, long but never edgy. Lingering complexity – tobacco, dusty cocoa and mixed black fruits. Decant for an hour in its youth. You can easily age this wine for ten to fifteen years.

Andy Smith

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52% Greywacke Vineyard

28% DuMOL GVR Estate

20% Hoppe-Kelly Vineyard

Harvest Date

October 6th through October 18th


Russian River Valley


7, 470, 877, Estrella & Alban

Age of Vines at Harvest

16 years

Barrel Aging

Aged 17 months in French oak hogsheads, 30% new


1050 cases of 750mL
16 cases of 1.5L
10 bottles of 3L