Our Estate vineyard is one of the coldest vineyards in California – in the world, for that matter – growing Syrah. When we purchased the property we were concerned that we would not be able to ripen Pinot noir, much less Syrah. Due to the moderating effect of our maritime climate, however, the onset of wet and cold weather is gradual and we can experience warm days with full sunshine in October. This allows us an additional month to ripen our grapes in comparison to other typical Syrah growing regions of the world which we need as the Syrah grapes are nowhere close to being ripe in late September.
Cool climate Syrah can take two forms. They are either red-fruited with floral and sanguine notes or leaning towards dark fruit with meaty, earthy notes. In both cases, refreshing acidity and low alcohol result in balanced wines with extraordinary age-ability. Each of our two cuvees – La Bruma and Les Titans – capture one of these expressions while delivering our site’s unique mineral and white pepper characteristics.
You will benefit greatly by aging our Syrahs. When young, the power and concentration will no doubt impress but aging Syrah, like most red wines, allows aromas to integrate and coalesce while bottle age characteristics develop. The result is a uniform, more complex profile. So drink a bottle now, if you must, but then hide a few and forget about them for a few years.
2014 Les Titans Estate Syrah, Sonoma Coast
Just from the color you can tell the 2014 Les Titans Syrah will be magnificent; it has an electric psychedelic purplish glow hinting at the energy present in the wine. The nose is a complete knockout with iron, grilled meat, hickory smoke, ink, and pain grillé aromas. The mouth is consistent with the nose combining power and precision. The finish is long and clean with great acidity and lingering notes of violets and squid ink. The Les Titans has everything you could hope for in cold climate Syrah with grace and focus and none of the one dimensional, heavy, leaden quality found in lesser wines. I suggest you drink a bottle upon release to see what is so exciting and then open a few every few years to watch it evolve into the single best Les Titans – and maybe even Syrah – we have ever made.
2014 La Bruma Estate Syrah, Sonoma Coast
The La Bruma cuvée is our more berry and floral driven Syrah and the classic 2014 La Bruma is no exception. The violet notes are supported by grilled bread, new leather and blood aromas with hints of cloves and cinnamon stick. These last toasty notes will integrate over the next 5 years. The mouth has the classic La Bruma flavors of iron, blackberry, ink (or lead pencil) and cherry with medium body and great acid. The La Bruma still tastes a little young at this stage but by winter will be approachable and will bring great enjoyment over the next 15+ years.
2013 Les Titans Estate Syrah, Sonoma Coast
The 2013 vintage signaled the return of our Syrah blocks to healthy production. The timing was perfect as the vines are middle aged and making wines of such great character as evidenced by the 2013 Les Titans.
This may be our best Les Titans to date; better than the deep and rich 2006 or the bold and aromatic 2009 (my previous favorites.) There is a notable depth of Peay Estate Syrah character in the 2013 with less flash and flesh than the ‘06 or ‘09. The nose and mouth showcase red fruits, iron, blood, and rosemary. The mid-palate is neither firm nor fat but focused and harmonious. The persistence on the finish is very long. I could drink this all day long with or without food. You can enjoy it now (the aromas are well-integrated despite the youth and I want you to try it and become as excited as I am) or you can age it for as long as you desire (10+ years to 2016 and beyond).
Archived Tasting Notes >