Our sixty-year-old Petite Syrah vineyard at Stags' Leap Winery has three different selections of Petite Syrah clones inter-planted with a multi-ethnic population of other Rhône varietals including Syrah, Carignane, Grenache, Peloursin, and Mourvèdre. This diversity meets in the fermenter and intermingles, adding and subtracting and joining together to create a wine that has unique characteristics—a big-but-soft edged structure that carries aromas and bold fruit flavors around the palate and through to a full-mouthed, flavorful finish. Since 1988, Winemaker Robert Brittan has worked to identify and propagate as much of this diversity as possible so there will continue to be a Petite Syrah from Stags' Leap Winery in the decades to come.
Vintage 1998 was a long, cool growing season. Leading into the mouth, round fruit, berry, cherry and candied bergamot aromas mix with sweet vanilla and brown spices from 20 months aging in French and American oak barrels. A bold concentration of fruit in the center of the palate is surrounded by berry, Grenadine cherry and black raspberry flavors. The finish is long and substantial.