2021 Âmevive, Périphérie, Field Blend Red, Ibarra-Young Vineyard, Los Olivos AVA, Santa Ynez Valley.
A light hued, framed and delicate red wine that reminds me of some of the Jura regional blends, the 2021 Âmevive Périphérie Field Blend, uniquely made from old vines that includes a co-fermenting of Syrah, Mourvedre and Marsanne, is a fresh and delicious wine that shines with bright red fruits along with a clean and graceful mouth feel. The all organic Ibarra-Young Vineyard located in the Los Olivos AVA has long been a treasure to the Santa Barbara area wine community, providing quality grapes to leading winemakers since the 1970s and later, even catching the eye and fancy of the late Jim Clendenen of Au Bon Climat, who did a few speciality offerings from this site during the 1990s. Winemaker Alice Anderson, who I’ve recently profiled in the Spring, says that the vines for this Périphérie are part of the original plantation by Charlotte Young back in 1971 and that her 2021 vintage offerings marks these vine’s 50th anniversary harvest. The medium bodied palate has a cool toned array of red raspberry, strawberry and cherry fruits along with a mix of garden herbs, orange peel and briery spices, making for a fun ruby red wine that enjoys a slight chill and easy cuisine.
The youthful Anderson, who has committed to regenerative organic and biodynamic practices, says that the Périphérie, which comes in at just 11.9% natural alcohol, was harvested on a single morning, with the grapes coming nicely cool and as melted all co-fermented. She continues, that the ratio of each grape is not a science, it directly correlates to the amount of vines in each row working up the western side of the property. She explains that her Marsanne, Syrah, and Mourvedre (grapes) were harvested into the same picking bins and brought to the cellar to be de-stemmed into open top barrels. After its native fermentation commenced, this Périphérie was made with minimal extraction with what she calls, some gentle love touches and pour overs, after which the must was sent to press after a little more than 2 weeks on its skins. This wine was only aged for about 6 months, seeing mostly neutral French oak, but with close to a third matured in stainless steel tank, before its bottling, all to keep the wines natural energy intact. Alice and her partner Topher have leased 10 acres, since 2020, the vintage of their first releases, at the Ibarra-Young Vineyard that they farm to make these Âmevive wines, which are all very limited offerings and only available on their mailing list, I recommend joining on the website, there is a lot of potential here and the current set of releases, like this one, are very pleasing and delightful efforts.
($36 Est.) 90 Points, grapelive