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Stolpman Vineyards Hilltops Syrah 2007

Syrah/Shiraz from Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
  • RP97
0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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RP 97
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
During the elevage of the 2007 Syrah Hilltops Estate (100% Syrah) the fruit is passed over the lees of the Roussanne used for the L’Avion. Cropped at 1.5 tons of fruit per acre (from the vineyard’s highest peaks), this beauty offers sweet blackberry, honeysuckle, and black cherry notes intermixed with hints of smoke, chocolate, and espresso roast. This inky/purple-tinged wine boasts a superb texture, sweet, velvety tannins, and a long finish. It is an intriguing California Syrah that offers a style mid-way between a classic Central Coast Syrah and a wine from the northern Rhone (such as Cote Rotie). Consume it over the next decade.
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Stolpman Vineyards

Stolpman Vineyards

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Stolpman Vineyards, California
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Stolpman Vineyards is located in Ballard Canyon, just 15 miles from the coast. The location lends to warm days with cool nights. Tom and Marilyn Stolpman planted their first grapes in 1992 and today have 120 planted acres. The vineyard continues to be a dynamic location for the planting of Syrah, Sangiovese and Rousanne. Jeff Newton and Larry Finkle, along with our Vineyard Manager, Ruben Solorzano, have recently planted high density vines and continue to explore the standards of what it takes to make the best quality grapes from southern exposed vines and limestone soil.
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Santa Ynez Valley

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Ranging from cool and foggy in the west to warm and dry in the east, the Santa Ynez Valley is a climatically diverse growing area. The most expansive AVA within the larger Santa Barbara County region, Santa Ynez is also home to a wide variety of soil types and geographical features. The appellation is further divided into four distinct sub-AVAs—Sta. Rita Hills, Ballard Canyon, Los Olivos District and Happy Canyon—each with its own defining characteristics.

A wide selection of grapes is planted here—more than sixty different varieties, and counting. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir dominate in the chilly west, while Zinfandel, Rhône blends, and Bordeaux blends rule the arid east. Syrah is successful at both ends of the valley, with a lean and peppery, Old-World sensibility closer to the coast and lush berry fruit further inland.

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Syrah/Shiraz

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Marked by an unmistakable deep purple hue and savory aromatics, Syrah accounts for a good deal of some of the most intense, powerful and age-worthy reds in the world. Native to the Northern Rhône, Syrah still achieves some of its maximum potential here, especially from Hermitage and Côte-Rôtie.

Syrah also plays an important component in the canonical Southern Rhône blends based on Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre, adding color, depth, complexity and structure to the mix. Today these blends have become well-appreciated from key appellations of the New World, namely Australia, California and increasingly, with praise, from Washington.

In the Glass

Syrah typically shows aromas and flavors of purple fruits, fragrant violets, baking spice, white pepper and even bacon, smoke or black olive. In Australia, where it goes under the name Shiraz, it produces deep, dark, intense and often, jammy reds. While Northern Rhône examples are typically less fruity and more earthy, California appears increasingly capable of either style.

Perfect Pairings

Flavorful Moroccan-spiced lamb, grilled meats, spareribs and hard, aged cheeses are perfect with Syrah. Blue cheeses are perfect with a dense and fruit-driven Australian Shiraz.

Sommelier Secret

Due to the success of Australian “Shiraz,” winemakers throughout the world have adopted this synonym for Syrah when they have produced a plush and fruit forward wine made in the Australian style. As an aside, Australians are also fond of tempering their fruit-forward Shiraz by blending with Cabernet Sauvignon, which adds depth and structure.

FPOHILLTOPS_2007 Item# 127951