Stolpman Vineyards Ruben's Block Syrah 2017
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
If at first fairly brooding with a quiet sense of potency rather than
a Syrah marked by bluster, but one, that with coaxing, bit by bit
opens to show a wealth of deep, very pure blackberry fruit and
flashes of dark chocolate, gleanings of caramelized meat, a light
shading of pepper and a scant streak of stony soil, this weighty,
well-balanced, full-bodied offering buffers its youthful tannins
with fruity substance to spare. Though with an hour or so of time
in a decanter, it will satisfy those for whom patience comes hard,
but know that this is a collectable, eminently age-worthy Syrah
whose promise will not begin to be realized until a minimum of
another half-decade has passed.
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.
Accounting for only ten percent of the greater Santa Ynez AVA, Ballard Canyon’s north-south orientation provides an ideal pattern of sunshine and martime fog for producing excellent Syrah. While Syrah is planted to half of the total AVA acreage, an additional third is dedicated to other Rhône varieties, red and white.
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.”