This Sta. Rita Hills Syrah continues to showcase the cool climate character of Syrah as grown in the Santa Rita Hills. 2013 was a cool and late harvest with a small crop. In spite of the coolness the vines matured well and we picked at optimum ripeness. The wine shows elegance, intensity and complexity.
The Santa Rita Hills is a small appellation at the western end of the Santa Ynez Valley that has gained international recognition for its Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Syrah. The Valley runs west to east permitting the late afternoon ocean fog to roll into Santa Rita Hills, where it lingers until early morning. The surrounding hills trap the fog before it is dissipated in the wider Santa Ynez Valley.
In the spring when the frost is the biggest concern and layer of fog over the vineyard can provide protection. In the summer the fog moderates the normally warm days of the valley, cooling the grapes at night. Warm days and cool nights are what gives Lafond Sta. Rita Hills Syrah 2013 its spicy rich complex flavours. The grapes are picked at night so that when they are processed in the morning the temperature in the fermenters can be quickly dropped allowing maximum extraction of flavours.
Lafond Winery & Vineyards (also owner of Santa Barbara Winery) produces Pinot Noir, Syrah and Chardonnay at the estate winery in Sta. Rita Hills. The 65 acres was first planted in 1971 at the western tip of the Santa Ynez Valley. The new winemaker Bruce McGuire had been working in the Napa Valley but heard of some exceptional Chardonnay and Pinot Noir being produced in Santa Barbara County, the latter by Richard Sanford (see our producer ALMA ROSA), and one of his first suggestions to Pierre Lafond was to plant some Pinot Noir. The property is in the heart of Pinot Noir country, with soil and microclimates exceedingly favourable to that fickle grape variety.
In the spring of 2002, Lafond Winery releases its Sta. Rita Hill wines made exclusively from grapes grown in the Santa Rita Hills appellation. These 3 wines, Pinot Noir, Syrah and Chardonnay immediately received 10 medals between them, and are still collecting new awards at every new vintage. We are very proud and happy to be able to present both Lafond Pinot Noir and Lafond Syrah in our assortment.
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