The 2017 harvest wrapped up in early fall following summer heat spurts and a growing season that saw significant rain throughout the state, ending a five-year drought. While October wildfires in the North Coast made international headlines, the state’s vineyards and wineries were not significantly affected. Harvest began early at a normal pace in the Sierra Foothills and then progressed rapidly during a heat wave in late August and early September. Temperatures cooled mid-September, slowing the harvest pace and allowing red grapes to ripen gradually.
The Sierra Foothills AVA is among one of the largest in the world, encompassing 2.5 million acres of land. The very first vineyards were planted in this region during the California Gold Rush. The vineyards for the three varietals in this blend—Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre—are located at an elevation of 1,700 feet, well above the fog line. This location has long, warm, and sunny summer days balanced by nights that are cooled by breezes flowing from the Sierras. The vineyard soils are primarily decomposed granite and volcanic rock.
Each varietal was fermented separately using a combination of native and proprietary yeast for added complexity. We did twice daily punch downs for maximum extraction, fermented the must to dryness, and then pressed off the skins into barrel. After a year in oak, the winemaking team sampled each barrel to find the best of each varietal before finalizing the blend.
Aromatics of crushed violets, wild blueberry, and black currant. Medium-bodied with a plush texture, the wine has bright raspberry and cinnamon on the palate. Soft tannins give way to a lively, tart cherry finish.
The GSM blend is a versatile food-pairing wine that works particularly well with dishes featuring Mediterranean spices, including red pepper, sage, rosemary, and olives. Judd’s Hill GSM pairs beautifully with tapas and salty foods like sardines, with the salt softening the tannin and leading to a very smooth finish.
|Wine Style||Red Wine|
|Harvest Date||August - October 2017|
|Bottling Date||March 6, 2019|