Peake Ranch Winery is only a few vintages in, but already they're on to something: sexy, expressive Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Syrah and Grenache from excellent vineyard sites in the Sta. Rita Hills and Santa Maria Valley. All their fruit is estate grown and all of their wines are low-production. Owner John Wagner is a physicist-turned-hedge-fund-manager-turned-winemaker, who developed a passion for the grape when he bought Sierra Madre vineyard and got "sucked in," as he puts it. He's brought talented folks on board-an exciting young winemaker named Wynne Solomon who cut her teeth at Melville; Michael Anderson, a veteran viticulturalist; and somm/winemaker Paul Lato. They're currently in the throes of building a state-of-the-art winery and tasting room at the old Richard Sanford property, being careful to preserve the historic spaces that harken back to the founding of the Sta. Rita Hills AVA (and Sideways fame, of course). The future looks bright for Peake Ranch, but, in the here and now, they've got some fantastic wines on the roster.
The 2019 Syrah starts in the glass with Inky and garnet red color. Showing complexity and strength on the nose. Savory aromatics lead with notes of cedar barbeque, pink peppercorns, and caramelized sugar on a blackberry pie. The tannins are broad and dominating the palate upfront, while the acidity comes in later to extend the wine’s length. The velvety tannin structure creates an alluring texture throughout the palate. Harvested later in the season, this wine shows the intention and power of a vine which utilizes the entire growing season for developing the gorgeous fruit.
Getting awarded 95-Points by Jeb Dunnuck, you know you are getting something exciting in your glass!
Jeb Dunnuck - Sourced all from the Sta. Rita Hills section of the John Sebastiano Vineyard, the 2019 Syrah John Sebastiano Vineyard is a rock star effort that spent 18 months in neutral barrels. Black raspberries, olive tapenade, smoked herbs, and crushed flower notes all flow to a rich, full-bodied beauty that has ultra-fine tannins, thrilling purity and a great, great finish. Love it.