Each year, I feel Yves and I get closer to achieving the vision we have had for this project. I have always felt that this vineyard brings a very Hermitage aspect to the table.
The 2018 is black as night to the rim of the glass and back. Aromatics of blackberry/black cherry pie filling ooze from the glass, followed by fresh pencil shavings, brioche and savory notes of wild Herbes de Provence, and a hint of cedar. Full-bodied, but not heavy on the palate, the Rockpile minerality carries this wine from the incredibly rich and giving front palate to the exotic mid-palate that showcases black fruits, black licorice and touch of charcuterie. So rich, so intense, so elegant, and in the end, so magical.
It is the oldest block of Syrah at Rockpile (RP) Vineyard. After making this Syrah for many years as the 'Haley' bottling, I decided to try a new project. This time, I wanted to work with another of my winemaking heroes, Yves Cuilleron of Côte-Rôtie. I met Yves in 1998 at Hospice du Rhône in Paso Robles. Yves and I wanted to take this Syrah in a different direction than what I had been making, so we did.
The original budwood came directly from Hermitage in the northern Rhône and was planted soon after. To really appreciate how different Domaine des Chirats is from the other RP Syrahs I make, you really need to taste them side-by-side. I also encourage you try it alongside a bottle of Yves Cuilleron Côte-Rôtie to see how our two styles come together.
Domaine des Chirats is translated in old French to "home of the pile of rocks". What a fitting name for this special wine.
At 2010 ft. elevation, our vineyard sites that we source from are rocky, and stressed. This gives me amazing fruit to make our Rockpile Vineyard Syrahs.
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