We have 15 acres of Sangiovese planted on the vineyard for one reason only: Tom Stolpman loves Italian wine (and most everything Italian) and demanded to plant the grape in our initial wave of vineyard development. Around Santa Barbara County, Stolpman Vineyards’ reputation is based around this wine just as much as our heralded Syrahs.
High winds and cool conditions early in the growing season made for extremely reduced yields in 2015. Because of this, the 2015 will sell out extremely quickly. Vines put all of their energy into very few grapes, and the vintage carries a stamp of pent-up, bright energy. 2015 wines will certainly age for decades.
AT THE WINERY
The winery team focused on gentle extraction especially in the 2015 vintage. The tiny Sangiovese grapes meant a heightened skin-to-juice ratio, carrying the threat of menacing tannins. We gently broke up the juice from the berries by foot then relied solely on pump overs - rather than harsher punch downs - to circulate the fermenting tanks. Only free-run juice made it into the Estate Sangiovese barrels as the more-tannic press-wine extracted from the skins was declassified.
Out of the top of the glass, the 2015 Estate Sangiovese waves a cute hello of bright cherry fruit. Upon further inspection, a gateway opens into lusher depths of strawberries over rich shortcake. The brightness never fades from the top of the senses and adds a freshness to both the wine’s substantial body and its ripe fruit. Underneath and supporting the immense layers of fruit lies delicate, dried black tea leaves somehow balancing the whole show mid-air.