This wine fills the glass with aromas of dark fruit, pencil shavings, grilled bread and hints of freshly ground white pepper, which are complemented by flavors of black plums, preserves, cranberry and warm Okanagan cherry clafouti that’s been cooked in a cast iron pan.
This wine has loads of fruit, mellow tannins and complex aromatics, it is a go-to red, she is super fun and refreshingly reliable.
This is a blend from three of my growers and they are all sustainably dry farmed sites: 80+ years old Carignane from Hawkeye Ranch and 65+ year old Zinfandel from Knox Vineyard in Redwood Valley (53%), 120+ years old Carignane from Casa Roja Vineyard in Contra Costa (28%), Syrah from Ledgewood Vineyard in Suisun Valley (19%).
Both the Carignane lots were 90% de-stemmed and 10% whole cluster, they were fermented in open top stainless steel tanks with punch downs. I included 33% whole cluster fermentation in this Syrah lot and it was fermented in an open top fermenter (with pigeage by yours truly), this added a complexity that I am really excited about. After the native fermentation was finished the wines were put to barrel and aged in 9% once-used oak and 91% neutral French oak. Once secondary (native malolactic) fermentation was complete the barrel selected blend was racked together, becoming Farmstrong Field Red. The wine was put back to barrel for a total elevage of 10 months before being bottled in the summer.
All three of the vineyard sites where the grapes of this blend are grown have a large diurnal temperature shift. This is a key element that allows the fruit to be balanced and beaming with flavor at lower sugars, allowing me to harvest earlier and retain the lovely natural acidity, vibrant red fruits and floral notes.