2017 Sheldon Wines, Vinolocity Red, California.
To say that Dylan Sheldon, and his wife Tobe, owners of the micro-winery Sheldon Wines in Santa Rosa, think outside the box, is as an outrageous of an understatement as you could think of in the world of wine, especially in California, they continue to push and explore the envelope of norms, and this is fascinatingly true here in their new Vinolocity, a red blend of Petite Sirah and Tempranillo. Only produced in the best or unique vintages Dylan’s Vinolocity has up until now been more a Rhone inspired cuvee crafted from selected vineyard sites, with the White version usually Grenache Blanc based, while the Red normally formed around a core of Grenache Noir, but this one has gone a completely new and mind blowing direction with it’s two barrel blend of old vine Napa Valley Petite Sirah and full carbonic maceration Tempranillo! One barrel of Napa Valley, Collier Vineyard, Old Vine Petite made with traditional methods and raised in well seasoned French oak was blended with full carbonic and stainless fermented Sonoma County Tempranillo, it makes for a super tasty California rarity! Sheldon Wines is in a group of exciting winemakers in California that includes Arnot-Roberts, Windgap/Pax, Martha Stoumen, Broc Cellars, Ryme and Onward, just to name a few, that are going their own way and following new paths, exploring varietals and styles. Dylan Sheldon has been a champion of Graciano, the little known Rioja grape as well as his loved Grenache Noir, but he also does a wonderful set of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah bottlings vintage to vintage, all on the lighter and more delicate side. This 2017 Vinolocity is at first juicy and expressive with the carbonic influence taking the palate by storm with an almost Gamay like dark and tangy fruitiness before the dark and deep structural quality of the old vine Petite Sirah makes it’s presence known and felt on the intriguing medium weight body with a bust of fine tannin that puts the brakes on the fruity character adding a tight focus. The tension is intoxicating and the black, red and blue fruits feel bright and wonderfully lifted up by a touch of mineral and subtle earthy notes with layers of Tempranillo led black cherry, plum and racy currant as well as blueberry, cranberry and briar laced blackberry from the Petite, from my experience and then you get secondary notes of sweet and sour herbs, minty licorice, unsweetened coco powder, mixed spices and a touch of cedar. With air a floral array lifts from the glass and there is true sense of harmony, surprising texture and youthful freshness that makes this wine oh so easy to quaff and it’s lovely purple/garnet color invites repeated sips, this Vinolocity is wonderfully addictive and amazingly flexible with cuisine options from small bite Tapas to full on BBQ, drink now and for the next 3 to 5 years. Sheldon’s Vinolocity 2017 joins an up coming set of releases that also includes their Grenache and a single vineyard Graciano, but don’t wait, these are very limited and will go fast!
($40 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive

By admin