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Syrah has a long documented history in the Rhône region of Southeastern France, and it was not known if it had originated in that region. In 1998, a study conducted by Carole Meredith's research group in the Department of Viticulture and Enology at University of California, Davis used DNA typing and extensive grape reference material from the viticultural research station in Montpellier, France to conclude that Syrah was the offspring of the grape varieties Dureza (father) and Mondeuse Blanche (mother).
In the United States, wine produced from the grape is normally called by
its French name, Syrah. However, in cases where winemakers choose to follow a
New World style, similar to Penfolds Grange, they may choose to label their
wines as Shiraz. Under American wine laws, either name may appear on the label. Syrah first appeared as a wine grape in California in the 1970s, where it was planted by a group of viticulturists who called themselves "Rhône rangers." Although most plantings of the grape are in California, there are increasing amounts of it being grown in Washington state.
California Syrahs, much like those in France, vary a great deal based on the climate and terroir that they inhabit. In exceptionally warm regions, such as parts of Napa, the wine is often blended with other Rhône varieties. Other appellations, primarily mountainous ones, tend to produce varietal-based wines that can stand on their own. Syrah was introduced into Washington state in 1985 by the Woodinville, Washington Columbia Winery. Expanding at a significant rate, it is used to produce single varietial wines as well as being blended with grapes such as Grenache, Cinsault, and Viognier.
Our Vineyard Information
Year Vines Planted: 2007 & 2008
Type of Wine Produced: Red
Harvest: Late September to Early October
Harvest Quantity: N/A