Composition: 47% Grenache
Appellation: Russian River Valley
Aging: 19 months
Barrels: 16% New French Oak
84% Neutral French Oak
pH / TA: 3.75 / 6.1 g/L
Production: 159 Cases
2016 GSM - Russian River Valley
The grapes that produced our GSM blend came from two seprate vineyards in the legendary Russian River Valley wine region. Block Thirty-Four, which contained our Grenache and Mourvèdre, and Block Forty for the Syrah. Both vineyards had ideal growing conditions in 2016. Block Forty is in a slightly warmer location so the Syrah was picked first, on September 20th. The Grenache was picked shortly after, on September 24th. Mourvèdre is well known for being one of the latest ripening grapes in winemaking, and sure enough, the grapes did not reach full maturity until October 14, only two days before the 2016 El Niño rains overtook Sonoma county, effectively ending the harvest.
Producing a GSM blend has always been a dream of mine. I have always loved the complex flavors of the wines from the Southern Rhone region of France. Those wines can be made of up to thirteen different grape varietals but are always dominated by three, Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre. These three grapes were made for each other. The Grenache contributes fruitiness, acidity and brightness. The Syrah adds tannins, a dark color and a long finish. And the Mourvèdre adds an incredible mid-palate and intense mouthfeel. Together, they create wines that are both complex, fruit forward and can age for many years. The making of this blend was a nearly three and a half year project. Producing the wines was really just the beginning. I made each wine separately and allowed them to age individually for one year. As they were aging I began to perform small blending trials, looking for the perfect combination. This culminated with a final blind tasting of our five favorite blends and a winner was unanimously selected. The wine was then blended and returned to the barrels to age for several more months, which helped produce a more cohesive wine prior to bottling. The finished wine is truly spectacular. It showcases all of the incredible traits of each grape and blends them together into a complex wine with a seemingly endless blend of flavors.
Silver Medal - 2019 Indy International Wine Competition