Points Unknown, the second wine in the compendium, is aptly named for its hybrid style that melds both old-world and new-world traits as well as underscores our blending process, which originates in the field.
|Blend||50% Grenache, 32% Syrah, 18% Mourvèdre|
|Vineyard Designation||Steel Plow Vineyard, Sonoma Valley|
|Soil Profile||Cortina, Los Robles & Yolo – all gravelly loam|
|Wine Notes||Dark, brooding opulence reflective of its alluvial rock roots. Sultry aromas of licorice, black pepper and pipe tobacco. Flavors of cherry and blackberry pie, with earthy notes of sarsaparilla root and soft leather.|
|Specs||pH 3.74 ǀ Acid .51 g/100mL ǀ Alcohol 14.9%|
|Production||200 cases released|
This field blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre exudes a dark, brooding opulence reflective of its alluvial rock roots. Deep and ruby-hued, this wine reveals sultry aromas of licorice, black pepper and pipe tobacco with lifted notes of dried lavender. A soft and full entry introduces flavors of lush black cherry and blackberry pie, intermingled with earthy notes of sarsaparilla root and soft leather. Medium tannins and balanced acidity support a structured finish accented with warm baking spices. This wine is enchanting now, but will age elegantly for 10 years.
Sourced primarily from Steel Plow Vineyard at the foot of Sugarloaf Mountain, this vineyard boasts three distinct soil types — Cortina, Los Robles and Yolo — each composed of gravelly loam. A variety of drought-resistant French, Italian and American rootstocks support deficit-irrigation and organic farming practices. The clones originated from the budwood of Rhône Valley’s celebrated Chateau Beaucastel, arriving at Steel Plow Vineyard via Tablas Creek Nursery.
Harvested by hand in the cool morning hours, the selected six blocks were hand-sorted to a single tank and co-fermented on skins for three weeks. The wine then aged 20 months in thin-stave, French oak barrels (45% new, 55% used) from Boutes Grand Reserve and Baron Premium cooperages, prior to aging one year in bottle.
A Rhône blend, the 2014 Points Unknown gives a medium to deep garnet-purple color and pronounced nose of raspberry and blackberry preserves, allspice, licorice, black pepper and a hint of vanilla. Full-bodied, rich and spicy in the mouth, it has gorgeous soft tannins with plenty of depth and harmony to the finish. 170 cases were made.
– Lisa Perrotti-Brown, The Wine Advocate, 2/28/2017
Bright, juicy, bold and smooth with notes of mulberry, boysenberry and vanilla.
– Catherine Fallis MW, Planet Grape, 4/3/2017
The producer refers to this highly-allocated wine as a Rhône-style field blend, a composition of 50% Grenache, 32% Syrah and 18% Mourvèdre grown in rocky alluvial soils. Aged 20 months in thin-stave French oak (45% new), this wine defines broad and brooding—with notes of brandied plum and chocolate-espresso. The grainy tannins feel good on the tongue, playing into a parade of lavender, tobacco and blackberry jam. A new project from the Bundschu family’s sixth generation.
– Meridith May, The Tasting Panel, May 2017