The long, cool, "El Nino" growing season in 1998 allowed the normally hot, Paso Robles appellation to enjoy more "coastal" temperature patterns with cooler days and colder nights. The harvest in this East Side vineyard got underway in early October, nearly a month later than the regional average. Full fruit maturity allowed a very natural approach to be taken in the cellar. Nearly all the wine was produced in closed top tanks with a floating cap to gently extract the deep Syrah color and the classic purple plum, cassis and wild blackberry flavors. Aging in two year air dried, American oak barrels, two-thirds of which were new, has added a lovely, toast and vanilla note.