Sheldon 2018 Grenache | Ceja
Ceja Farms Vineyard | Sonoma Valley
36 Cases captured into bottle | 13.5% Alc.
The Sexy Stuff:
"...wonderfully expressive... it is a wine that rushes at you with a red floral array on the nose as well as fresh crushed raspberry, plum, pomegranate, sweet strawberry and candied cherry fruits coming into vivid focus on the medium-bodied palate along with a light dusting of spices and shrub/herbs, plus Turkish delights confectionery or Jolly Rancher, lavender and anise. ...it like the other beautiful offerings from this vintage in their lineup really excels in the glass and struts its stuff with pride and is very well balanced. ... This Ceja Farms absolutely and with some flamboyance performs impeccably and with loads of stylish personality, it will get your attention and seduce you, enjoy it with a rustic meal and lots of laughter!" 94 POINTS - grapelive
Winemaker Tasting Notes:
I’m thrilled to have the Ceja Grenache back in our line-up after a few years of absence. Color is a deep crimson hue with magenta at the edges. Nose of black raspberries, dark cherries and wild fennel to follow. The palate has a nice frame, it is medium-bodied with a hibiscus tea-like tannin. A little touch of blood orange, coriander and kirsch show up on the finish. With aeration elderberry and a suggestion of bay laurel emerge. Having watched eight previous vintages of Grenache sourced from this vineyard mature and evolve, I expect to see its optimum window of drinking opening around the late winter/ early spring of 2020 and carrying through the next 6-8 years.
The Geeky Stuff:
hand-harvested on October 17th, 2018
average of 23 brix
1/2 ton open top macro-bin fermentation
100% Neutral French Oak
pH 3.62 | TA .59 | ALC 13.5%
This two-acre vineyard is planted on rocky alluvial soils at the south end of Sonoma Valley near Carneros and the Petaluma wind gap. Largely surrounded by Pinot and Chard vineyards is exists in an area most growers would consider a bit too cool to ripen Grenache. Due to the slow ripening we tend to get excellent hang time, flavor development and physiological ripeness with lower overall sugars. My approach with Grenache is to lightly crush on whole cluster, cover with a CO2 blanket (dry ice) for 24 hours of cold soak prior to fermentation. After four to six days of slow semi-carbonic fermentation we gently de-stem leaving most berries whole and transfer into a new bin to complete the remainder of fermentation. This is a labor-intensive practice I’ve been utilizing since my first vintage of making Grenache back in 2000. Incorporating the stems in cold soak / initial fermentation allows for savory and spice components to establish before the overly astringent tannins arrive with the increase of heat and alcohol during the more vigorous stages of fermentation.