“ipso facto” is defined by Black’s Law Dictionary as “a Latin phrase that means by the act itself or by the mere fact.”
2016 was yet another year of signigicant drought along California’s Central Coast. The grapes for the 2016 “ipso facto” Viognier were picked on a cool nights and early mornings early during harvest.
For the first time ever, the fruit for our “ipso facto” Viognier does not come from the heralded Stolpman Vineyard in Ballard Canyon, but rather three esteemed vineyards in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties. From Santa Barbara County, we were fortunate to source one-third of our cuvee from a 14-acre vineyard (1.25 acres of Viognier) that grows just south of Los Olivos, in the heart of the Santa Ynez Valley. Another third of the blend came from a well established vineyard in the Santa Maria Valley. The final third of the 2016 “ipso facto” was harvested from an additional superb vineyard in San Luis Obispo County’s Edna Valley AVA.
Our change in vineyard sources resulted in changes in our winemaking program as well. Instead of partial to zero malolactic fermentation and all stainless steel, the 2016 “ipso facto” went through complete malolactic fermentation in neutral French oak barrels. Each vineyard was harvested and vinified seperately with the resulting blend decided just before bottling in Spring of 2017. The resulting wine is richer than previous vintages but not at all heavy or cloying.
Blend: 100% Viognier
Production: 133 cases 750ml
“de facto” is a Latin phrase defined by Black’s Law Dictionary as “In fact, in deed, actually. This phrase is used to characterize an officer, a government, a past action, or a state of affairs which exists actually and must be accepted for all practical purposes, but which is illegal or illegitimate.”
2015 was the final year of a multi-year year period of extreme drought. Bud break occurred in very early March under warm conditions which lasted into April. Unfortunately, a very cool and windy May resulted in a poor set; with crop levels reduced significantly. The small crop that was on the vine received all the plants’ energy through very warm to hot temperatures through the heart of the growing season, though there were cooler evenings in some cases to delay ripening somewhat. Harvest commenced in early September.
80% Ballard Canyon and Santa Rita Hills Syrah & 20% Santa Rita Hills Grenache.
The Syrah portion of the blend is comprised of two lots – 33% was co-fermented with Viognier from vineyards in Ballard Canyon and 67% was fermented without Viognier - then aged in one brand new Radoux barrel and three neutral barrels. The Grenache comes from the Santa Rita Hills AVA and was aged in neutral oak to preserve the fruit aromas and flavors.
Winemaker’s Tasting Notes
Very aromatic, with notes of spice, dark berries and plum. Tightly wound and rich. Firm and structured with moderate weight in the mouth. Tasting beautiful right now, but will reward short to moderate term cellaring with even greater rewards.
Blend: 80% Syrah & 20% Grenache
Production: 96 twelve-bottle cases 750 ml; 5 six-bottle cases 1500 ml