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Vintage Clendenen Family Syrah Viognier 2016
Jim Clendenen was famous for producing internationally acclaimed Pinot Noir & Chardonnay in California. Amongst the region’s top producers, the wines he started producing in 1982 set the standard for modern, terroir-driven Californian wine from Burgundian grapes. Wines under the Clendenden Family Vineyards label are not just another label – this was a project of passion for Jim. These are artisan, nuanced wines from small lots producing distinctive wines that have had the luxury to be in the barrel as long as they need it. Long-lived, food-friendly, with firm acidity and moderate alcohol, they are really special parts of Jim’s story that we are honoured to import and represent in the UK.
Rancho La Cuna is the vineyard situated at Jim’s ranch and his home. It is a small vineyard (about 15 acres) with vines situated on steep hillsides. It produces wines that are dark and herbal with outstanding complexity. Jim made this wine to emulate the North Rhone wines which take the tannic, muscular Syrah and add 10% of Viognier, gives it suppleness and texture. The Syrah and Viognier grapes were co-fermented, with ageing for five years in 500-litre Hungarian oak barrels.
A gorgeous expression of this French classic; a nose of alpine herbaceousness, dried blackberries, fresh violets, and earthy spice. The palate is rich, with a deep, lush Syrah character, thyme, sausage meat, pine & cedar and eucalyptus, green, white, and black pepper. With a little age, this wine is a beacon of balance, elegance, and varietal integrity. Juicy, mouth-filling and long; brilliant with big, rich dishes, burgers and BBQ!