2016 Sheldon Wines, Syrah, Luc’s Vineyard, Fountaingrove, Sonoma County.
The wonderfully crisp and finessed Sheldon Syrah Luc’s Vineyard from the Fountaingrove AVA is unbelievably dreamy on the palate with a mind blowing low 12.2% natural alcohol, highlighting the graceful nature of this wine and Dylan Sheldon’s unwavering believe in delicacy and lightness, while still making a wine that has ripeness and layers. Starts with grapey crispy brightness with a deep purple/garnet hue and lifted blue fruits with precise form and detail with pretty plum, black raspberry, tart blueberry, cherry along with snappy spices led by cinnamon, sweet herbs and light cedary notes. At first you feel Syrah has been totally re-envisioned here, but patience brings a truer picture, this wine is hiding behind it’s youth, with air and time a fuller expression reveals itself in Sheldon’s Luc’s Vineyard Syrah and a denser mouth feel begins to take over on the palate, in fact on day two it gains width and length filling out completely adding peppery briar notes, structured tannin and lilac floral tones as well as creme de cassis and loganberry richness. With only 25 cases made this single barrel Syrah, from Dylan and Tobe Sheldon, this won’t be available for long, it comes from a small home vineyard in the Fountaingrove AVA in a cooler area of Sonoma County, sandwiched between Chalk Hill to the North, Sonoma Valley to the South and by the Russian River to the West, not far from the area devastated by the recent Sonoma fires near Santa Rosa. The Sheldon’s, who trained under Louis Barruol of Saint Cosme (famed Rhone producer) on their honeymoon, use native yeasts, some whole cluster and no new barrels have always strived for elegance and old school charms, they were in pursuit of balance before it was a marketing catch phrase! This 2016 dances gracefully and is joyously tangy fresh making it wonderful with food, this is a pure and easy to drink California wine, it is an anti jammy effort that will thrill those that like wines like Ryme, Wind Gap, Arnot-Roberts and Oregon’s Bow & Arrow. Sheldon has never shied away from the fun and wild, be sure to check out their Tempranillo Brut Rose and their Graciano, this micro winery has some cool offerings, it would be a great time to discover them and get on their list.
($35 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive

By admin