2017 Chalone Estate Syrah, Chalone AVA
15 months in French oak, 50% new
The 2017 vintage yielded an average amount of rainfall overall, however approaching harvest we experienced incredible heat spikes with temperatures above 110°F for more than two weeks. A sudden temperature increase during this critical time makes for a swift harvest as sugar levels spike resulting in the entire vineyard ripening simultaneously. All of these factors amounted to a very condensed harvest, similar to the year prior.
Our Syrah vineyards make up 18 acres on the Chalone estate. These acres are divided into three sections: Tower, Strip and Macwood Vineyard, and the vines are grafted to three different Syrah clones for flavor complexity. The Australian Shiraz clone brings the Old World character: earthy spice, black tar, white pepper and deep fruit. The northern Rhône Syrah clone is bright and fruit-driven. The third clone’s character is between the Rhône and Shiraz clones, making the blend reminiscent of both wine regions, yet shaped by the terroir of Chalone.