Ruben's Block Syrah 2017
Background 'Grape Whisperer' Ruben Solorzano planted his block in 2006 amidst much fanfare and conjecture. Bottom line: 6,000 Syrah vines crammed into onto one beautiful cliff-side, dangling above Ballard Creek. Ruben farms his block without tractors or other modern-day conveniences. Each vine yields just two tiny, concentrated Syrah clusters – for the wine we call – Ruben’s Block. Vintage 2017 broke the pattern of the challenging and low-yielding odd-numbered vintages of 2011, 2013, and 2015. The vintage started with much-needed rain fall through March – allowing for healthy yields - and then was punctuated by two heat spikes mid-harvest. The heat lent extra juicy ripeness to the 2017 Cuadrilla. Ruben’s Block - one of the first Syrah blocks to be harvested each year because of the low fruit load on each vine – was harvested well before either of the 2017 heat spikes. Sensory Perhaps the strongest effort in our 10 year history of trying to harness the intensity of this unique planting. The 2017 Ruben's Block seems to be a most harmonious marriage of dense fruit purity and wild syrah “otherness”. Underlying lushness coats the tannins towards the finish with a scrumptious malt. This wine is truly the whole package – one I’m excited to check back in on frequently.