2016 Cherry Ridge Syrah
92 Points - Wine Enthusiast
We love cool-climate Syrahs and this 2016 is no exception. It beguiles, tempts, and delivers! Deep rich violet color with bight brilliant purple edges that is reminiscent of black berry juice. Aromas of ripe plum, black cherry, and a dusting of coco powder, clove and cinnamon with ethereal vanilla notes fill the nose. This is a fleshy, juicy and fruit forward wine. The aromas follow to the pallet with additions of black cherry, blueberry and white pepper. Lush black cherry and pepper persist in the long finish. This approachable wine is a hedonistic mouthful! Rich, velvety tannins make this is a full-bodied Syrah that can be enjoyed for the next 3-5 years, or it can be enjoyed now with a plate of barbequed ribs or smoked pork with all of the summer side dishes.
Like all of the fruit we farm, this was harvested by hand at night. At the winery, the fruit was gently hand-sorted, destemmed, and then cold soaked. Primary fermentation takes place in small, open top tanks and manually punched down no more than four times per day. After fermentation, the wine is pressed and racked into French oak barrels to age. Upon completion of secondary fermentation, each barrel is tasted and selected to make the final blend. Those final nine barrels rested 10 months before bottling.
Cherry Ridge Vineyard, planted in 1991 with French clone 877, has a south facing slope at the ridge top and is in one of the coolest sections of the Green Valley appellation, north of the Petaluma Wind Gap. The soil consists of the traditional Goldridge soil that is prominent in this region. The fog influence from the Sonoma Coast funnels through the Green Valley ensuring that the cool-climate terroir is expressed in fruit from this region. The vineyard grapes have spicy flavors intertwined with bold dark fruits with a twinge of sweetness and forest floor. It is a certified Sonoma County Sustainably-Farmed and Fish-Friendly vineyard as all are of the more than 80 that Dutton Ranch farms.