2015 Kuleto Estate Syrah, Napa Valley
The crop in 2015 was substantially lighter than in the previous three vintages, but produced wines of great intensity and concentration. At critical periods, the weather remained cool enough to stretch the harvest out for over one month, allowing for good flavor development without dehydration of the fruit. We at Kuleto Estate still don’t understand why Syrah isn’t more popular with the average consumer. It’s certainly one of our top sellers in our tasting room, probably because it’s always an in-house favorite. There are few places in the Napa Valley with the right combination of shale soils that limit a naturally vigorous variety, constant winds that interrupt bloom yielding open clusters, warm days, cool nights – all of which add up to perfect growing conditions for this primal, evocative grape variety. I say ‘primal’ because Syrah has an animal-like nature with its smoky charcuterie elements and its wet stone-like character. It might be too rustic with these flavors alone, but our 2015 Syrah also boasts aromas and flavors of sweet blueberries, black cherry and lavender. With the excellence of the 2015 vintage, we kept it the aging process pure and simple and by aging in larger format barrels (500L rather than 225L) without racking to preserve its essence.
99% Syrah, 1% Malbec
18 months in 50% new Hungarian François Frères 500 L puncheons
Only 285 cases produced