Departure Wine Company - 2006 Syrah, Tierra Alta Vineyard,

Santa Ynez Valley


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Tasting Notes

Indie Winemakers' Tasting Notes

Our mission is to provide unbiased opinions of the wine being offered. These notes come from up to 10 guests who tasted this wine in a blind tasting format (wine is concealed so their identity is unknown). Why this format? Tasting blind completely throws out any hype associated with a certain winery, style, price point, etc; it forces the taster to accept what is in the glass without any predetermined notions.

Our tasters are not wine professionals, but a cross-representation of professions where the common denominator is our love for wine. We utilize Robert Parker's Glossary of Wine Terms to help write our comments. In addition, we utilize the aroma wheel to enhance our ability to describe the complexity of wine flavor.

Tasting Notes

Group Tasting Notes: Ridiculously good wine! Very dark and extracted color in the glass on this Grenache. Red berry fruit nose. Tastes of black cherry, vanilla, raspberry - just like trying fruit samples at the farmers market. Incredibly long finish with a little bit of tannins. Give this a few more months and then dig in.

Group Tasting Notes: Clear dark ruby red color. This wine has medium viscosity with clear tear drops. It has great focus with blackberries and a smokey bacon nose. The tastes are similar along with some pepper that was not picked up before. Well structured, the wine has a velvety feel in the mouth. Nice medium-long finish.

Technical Data

Wine Technical Data
Blend 98% Syrah (Clone 877, Clone 1), 2% Viognier (Tablas Clone)
Appellation Tierra Alta Vineyard, Santa Ynez Valley AVA
Harvest Dates October 24, 2006
Sugar at Harvest 26.2 degrees Brix
Fermentation 12 days in 1.5 ton open top fermenters. Punchdowns by hand 3x daily
Aging / Cooperage 12 months in barrel, all French Oak cooperage 20% new
Alcohol 15.1% by volume
Acidity pH: 3.8, TA: .63

Technical Notes - Departure Wine 2006 Syrah, Tierra Alta Vineyard

About the Vineyards

The Tierra Alta Vineyard sits perched on a steep hillside above the quaint town of Los Olivos. This newer planting is in the heart of the Santa Ynez Valleys Ballard Canyon growing area and its just a matter of time before this special site gets the same attention as its renowned neighbors - the Beckmen Purisima Mountain Vineyard, the Stolpman Vineyard, and the Jonata Vineyard. Our flagship wine comes from side-by-side blocks planted on the very top ridge of Tierra Alta where the afternoon winds gets stronger and the limestone-infused soil gets thinner.

About The Vintage

The fruit for our Tierra Alta Vineyard Syrah was handpicked just before dawn, then carefully sorted before it was laid down nice and cold in 1.5 ton open top fermenters. 80% of the fruit was de-stemmed, and 20% was left whole cluster. This entire picking, sorting, and destemming effort is finished by around 8:30 am (its great to work with a vineyard thats just a few miles from the winery). Once the fruit is picked, its made in a let the vineyard speak style with as little manipulation as possible. After traditional foot pigeage for the first few days while the must is warming-up, fermentation kicked off and the cap was punched down 3-4 times a day throughout primary fermentation. The wine was then laid down without settling in a mix of French oak barrels where it completed natural malolactic fermentation. Only a touch of new oak (approx. 12%) was used in order to showcase the fruit and natural structure of the wine. .

Winemaker's tasting notes

We set out to maximize complex aromatics and flavors in this wine, yet stay true to the vineyard. With this goal in mind, the 2006 Tierra Alta Vineyard Syrah is handcrafted every step of the way using two different clones of Syrah ENTAV Clone 877 (80%) and UC Davis Clone 1 (20%) and just a touch of Viognier (2%) to add elegance and lift to the finished wine. Our 2006 Tierra Alta Vineyard Syrah welcomes you in with a deep purple hue then offers rich notes of blackberry and dark cherries. This array of dark fruit is complemented by hints of mocha, spice, and just a touch of sweet tobacco smoke.

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