La Croce 2012
One of the most unique wines we make at Stolpman Vineyards, La Croce continues its tradition as a 50-50 co-fermentation of Syrah and Sangiovese. We planted these side-by-side high-density blocks specifically to make this blend. The low yields and vine competition create maximum vibrancy and concentration. We pick the hillside Syrah and the Sangiovese, which is planted just above on the hilltop, on the same night and ferment the two varietals together. The result: one beautifully integrated red wine that takes on character of its own rather than elements of the individual varietals.
For such a massive wine, the nose gives off a whimsical red berry fruit aroma atop a core of new leather and lush forest floor. As the young, primary wine opens, attractive cocoa appears and the wine becomes more inviting. In the mouth, pulsating red fruit on top of Right Bank earthiness wows the un-indoctrinated – this is serious wine. The red fruit seems alive, as if still hanging on the vine. Well integrated with soft tannin bonded to a long fruit finish, and just when the wine seems over, one more intense pop of fruit resurges. Tasting library vintages of La Croce, I note an anise component that I only pick up in top notch Bordeaux-varietal wines. This dark bordelaise character signifies the uniqueness of this co-fermented field blend.