Baker Lane Sonoma Coast Cuvee Syrah 2015
While the pleasantly chewy tannins of this wine confirm that it too will continue to evolve for a number of years, it has an array of spicy black fruit notes that enliven it for current drinking. Any drinker who is familiar with the distinctive berry/savory character that marks our home vines will readily see how the Sonoma Coast Cuvee is another happy member of the family.
Nothing then was particularly exotic about planting vines in this part of West Sonoma County, that is planting Pinot Noir. Syrah and Viognier though were something of a different story. But, if there is anything about the unfolding narrative of California viticulture, it’s an ever-evolving picture. There are many sites now planted to grapes that would have been unthinkable 25 years ago. Similarly, as winegrowers seek to cultivate fruit with more precise flavors, acid retention and overall balance, the decision to push the envelope climatically becomes a natural choice.
Just as European winemakers have long championed the distinction of their terroir, we in California are legitimately celebrating their own sense of place. The vivid expression of vineyard character that cooler viticultural sites avails has driven this opportunity more than any other factor. Through 10 harvests we’re gratified to gather the consistent detail and character of their wines. Just as a child has to grow up a bit to reveal its personality, the accumulating collection of flavors presented by our family of wines is helping them know what their working with, and in turn constantly sharpening our approach to the care of the vines. It’s an exciting process to sustainably nurture our grapes and direct them in to the bottle. We hope that the fruit of our efforts is delicious for you as well.
A vast appellation covering Sonoma County’s Pacific coastline, the Sonoma Coast AVA runs all the way from the Mendocino County border, south to the San Pablo Bay. The region can actually be divided into two sections—the actual coastal vineyards, marked by marine soils, cool temperatures and saline ocean breezes—and the warmer, drier vineyards further inland, which are still heavily influenced by the Pacific but not quite with same intensity.
Contained within the appellation are the much smaller Fort Ross-Seaview and Petaluma Gap AVAs.
Marked by an unmistakable deep purple hue and savory aromatics, Syrah makes an intense, powerful and often age-worthy red. Native to the Northern Rhône, Syrah achieves its maximum potential in the steep village of Hermitage and plays an important component in the Red Rhône Blends of the south, adding color and structure to Grenache and Mourvèdre. Syrah is the most widely planted grape of Australia and is important in California and Washington. Sommelier Secret—Such a synergy these three create together, the Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre trio often takes on the shorthand term, “GSM.”