The Ojai Vineyard, Roll Ranch Syrah, Central Coast, California, 2019
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Overview of the Wine
Adam Tolmach went to UC Davis and studied viticulture and enology, and after graduating in 1976 he settled down on the property his grandfather bought in the Ojai Valley in 1933 to farm sweet corn and melons, selling them at a roadside stand. After two years of this satisfying, yet difficult and nearly profitless work he sought employment in his field of study.
Adam had planted a vineyard in Ojai to Syrah and Sauvignon Blanc and had begun producing wine from that fruit in 1983. When the collaboration with Clendenen ended he concentrated all his attention on The Ojai Vineyard to further explore the infinite details of his craft.
Looking back over the last 25 years, one can see the development of The Ojai Vineyard came in three distinct phases. In the beginning it was lots of fun discovering the budding Santa Barbara County, experimenting with new plantings, new areas, and a wide selection of varietals; Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah, and other Rhone varietals. Back in 1983 the vines were grown without much care in what was called a California sprawl. It took years to get growers to move towards progressive practices like drip irrigation and vertical trellising to improved wine grape quality.
Grape / Blend
98% Syrah and 2% Viognier
Central Coast, California
Winemaker's Tasting Notes
This rip This ripe, powerhouse Syrah is deep and earthy at first, then with some air the high notes come forward, showing lifted scents of violets, dark rose and savory herbs that mingle with the sweet promise of black cherry and apricots. Per usual, the palate is rich and muscular. There’s lots of impact with muddled berries and crème de violette. That’s all framed by earthy cocoa notes, peppery herbs, and a powerful structure of fine stemmy tannins and minerality. It’s an especially pretty and beguiling example of Roll Ranch, with no shortage of power for this wine’s ardent fans.
94 Points - Vinous
The 2019 Syrah Roll Ranch is absolutely gorgeous. Hints of blood orange, spice, incense, mint, rose petal and sweet red berry infuse the 2019 with striking exoticism. The 60% whole clusters works so well in the Roll Ranch. This deceptively mid-weight Syrah is packed with flavor and character.
93 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
Coming from a vineyard outside of Ojai, in Ventura County, the 2019 Syrah Roll Ranch Vineyard (there's always a splash of Viognier in the blend) reveals a deep purple hue as well as solid nose of ripe plums and darker berry fruits supported by leafy herbs, chocolate, lavender, and peppery spice notes. This rich, mouth-filling, powerful Syrah has plenty of mid-palate depth, good acidity, and a great finish. It is certainly the biggest, ripest Syrah in the lineup, yet it stays in the classic Ojai style of being fresh and light on its feet. It has the structure to evolve for 10-15 years in cold cellars.
Product size: 750ml