Lighter dishes such as grilled salmon with white pepper and herbes de Provence, or grilled flank steak with seasoned fingerling potatoes.
3 in stock
3 in stock
3 in stock
3 in stock
Russian River Valley, Sonoma, CA
92 points – Wine Enthusiast
This is the last vineyard to be picked most years due to its location west of Santa Rosa in Russian River Valley. The heavy layer of fog helps maintain a fresh wine profile and deep red hue. The vineyard is planted to four different clones of Syrah, which add layers of complexity to the wine.
The vineyard was harvested in late September. The juice was on the skins for 14 days during fermentation prior to being pressed off to tank to begin malolactic fermentation. The wine was racked to 100% French oak barrels before aging for 14 months and bottling unfiltered and unfined.
A native Scot, Steve Law followed a wine-lover’s path early on. It took him from Paris, where he began a tech career in his 20s, to many important points on France’s wine map, including Burgundy, Bordeaux, the Loire Valley, and Provence. But it was his wine-tasting forays in the northern Rhône Valley, just south of Lyon, that resulted in Steve’s obsession with Syrah—particularly the sought-after wines of Saint-Joseph and Côte-Rôtie.
One of the Rhône’s most highly respected vignerons, Yves Cuilleron, inspired and befriended him, offering valuable advice during his “newbie” winemaker days. Subsequently, Michael Talty in Dry Creek Valley gave Steve his first winery job in 2006, which led to the debut MacLaren Syrah getting vinified in Talty’s cellar in 2007.
When Steve and his wife (and winemaking muse), Heather, bottled that first wine—an ’07 Dry Creek Valley Syrah—they had their fingers crossed for success with this new endeavor while being realistic about its challenges. They were attaching their name (their Scottish clan’s name, anyway) to an artisan wine project they were passionate about, but with an inexact sense of where a Sonoma County wine brand not based on Pinot Noir, Cabernet, or Zinfandel would find acceptance among wine enthusiasts.
A dozen vintages later, access to fruit from such vineyards has enabled MacLaren Wines to create space for itself among California’s best producers of Syrah—along with its white Rhône counterpart, Viognier. Two other varieties, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, round out the current portfolio of wines. But it’s through Steve’s single-vineyard Syrahs that his and Heather’s friends and customers have come to understand the “why” of cool-climate Syrah in Sonoma County.
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