$30.00 / btl
Sold out
  • Vintage
  • Varietal
    Rhone Blends
  • Appellation
    Santa Lucia Highlands
  • Barrel Aging
    8 months bottled June 16th, 2011
  • Cooperage
    88% in 8 year old puncheons and neutral barrels, 12% in one stainless steel barrel
  • Production
    213 cases
  • Composition
    58% Viognier 42% Roussanne

2010 Les Tournesols - Viognier/Roussanne

In the world of white wine grapes, Roussanne is fairly unique and a bit odd, because it yields a certain sense of power to wines principally made from it - yet it is also quite delicate and nuanced in character. The more experience I have with its seemingly contradictory elements, the more it returns me to first principles: ripen the grapes enough to generate appropriate weight and texture without losing vibrancy and interesting aromatics, and carefully vinify the juice in such a way as to maintain those characters in the finished wine. For me at least, balance is everything in wine, and Roussanne demands great care in that regard.

Viognier also has quite a variable temperment. As it ages in barrels, by turns, it seems fresh and bright, then rich but muddled. But at the end, despite its apparent moodiness, it always emerges as a more cohesive and satisfying wine than expected: one that is full of playful, complex, and intriguing angles.

The aromas and flavors of the 2010 Les Tournesols blend (French for “Sunflowers”) center on mango and asian pear with supporting notes of licorice and clover honey. Very keenly balanced, there is a distinctive interplay between the richer elements at the edge and a lively component of fresh cut white peach, from the Viognier portion, that emerges to tie everything together on the finish.

58% Viognier - clone 642

42% Roussanne - clone 468

Harvested September 27th, 2010

23.6 brix at harvest

Yield: approximately 3.24 tons per acre

2.16 tons of Viognier, and 1.53 tons of Roussanne from Paraiso Vineyard were hand-picked, pressed, and fermented in the combination of one stainless steel barrel and neutral barrels and puncheons.

The wine was stirred gently over the winter, but was otherwise left untouched until final blending and bottling.