Significant winter rains refilled reservoirs for a second growing season in a row, ending a 5-year drought cycle and providing a promising start for the vintage. Budbreak, flowering and summer maturity carried out on schedule, but sped up late August culminating with a heat wave over Labor Day Weekend. Luckily temporal weather ensued through September and Syrah's natural resiliance allowed us to pick as the grapes eased into final ripening stages at peak maturity.
The power found in Syrah finds a lovely companion in Viognier, lifting floral aromatics and rounding out the palate, in our homage to the winemaking style found in the Northern Rhône Valley. The Petaluma Gap's climate and terroir lend their influence for a wholly unique example that gives Keller a bold bookend to the Estate's portfolio of wines. Co-fermentation of the varietals, 15% stem inclusion, and a 20-month barrel aging program give definition to the structure of the wine and ultimately prepare the juice for age worthy cellaring.
The relative cool climate compared to most Rhône interpretations helps soften some of the power and intensity while allowing the subtle and elegant aromatics to stand out. Deep black and blue in color, the dark fruit and wet earth are balanced by delicate hibiscus and purple floral aromatics. Rich fruit flavors of blackberry, black plum, acai meet savory black pepper, anise spice, tobacco, and cocoa nibs on the palate. The lengthy finish is due in part to the soft velvety tannins and complexity inherent in this blend.
|Production 270 cases||Oak 12% New French Oak|
|Harvest Date September 30 - October 1 2017||Alcohol 14.6%|
|Clones 887, Noir, Alban||pH 3.66|
|Fermentation Native Yeast||Total Acidity 6.11 g/L|
|Aging window 2021 - 2029|