2016 Les Collines Syrah
Walla Walla Valley
Taken from Les Collines’ website –
“I first tasted Syrah from Les Collines Vineyard during a visit to Walla Walla in 2004. I immediately returned to New York, quit my Sommelier job, sold everything we owned, moved to Washington, learned to make wine, started a winery and produced our first Les Collines Syrah in 2005. Yeah, it’s that good of a vineyard.” -Greg Harrington
The is a change we have hinted at for about a year. As Brandon and I have looked at the future of Gramercy, we are moving toward a predominately single vineyard model for Syrah. We are so fortunate to work with three of the best Syrah vineyards in Washington State – Les Collines, Red Willow and Forgotten Hills. They are very different sites with very different expressions. So why should we blend them? Why not take everything we are doing, i.e. native ferments, sustainable viticulture, minimal intervention and apply it to single vineyard Syrahs? And besides, the last few vintages of both the Deuce and Lagniappe have essentially been single vineyard wines.
A quick review of Les Collines. Located in the Blue Mountains on the eastern side of the Walla Walla Valley, Les Collines sits between 1,140-1,370 feet elevation and our sites are on the upper slopes between 1,250 and 1,370 feet. We work with three of the upper blocks at Les Collines – Block 36, Block 46 and Block 49. Block 46 is the base for John Lewis Syrah. Block 49 is above Block 46 which we grafted from Cabernet Sauvignon to Syrah in 2014. The upper slopes have near perfect drainage and exposure with shallow topsoils. The roots must dig deep into the subsoils and bedrock for minerals, water and nutrients. These factors create a healthier plant with perfectly balanced fruit.
The 2016 Les Collines Syrah was fermented with native yeast ranging from 20 to 24 days in concrete and stainless steel. As with most Gramercy Syrah, this wine was fermented 100% whole cluster. The wine was aged in a combination of neutral French oak 20 hectoliter (hL) Stockinger cask (or Foudre) and 500-liter puncheon for 15 months.
Tasting Notes: “Lavender, violets, black pepper, and game notes all emerge from the 2016 Syrah Les Collines, a Côte Rôtie look-alike. Medium-bodied, fresh, and lively, I love its balance as well as its depth of fruit. It should benefit from short-term cellaring and keep for a decade.” – Jeb Dunnuck Barrel Sample
Drinking Window: 2019-2035
Whole Cluster: 100%
|AGING:||15 months in neutral French Puncheons and Foudre|