Russian River Valley
October 27, 2011
16 months in French oak, 15% new
February 1, 2013
2011 Odyssey Syrah Russian River Valley
From the glass the Provencal dried herbs, black pepper and coriander spice, wild berry compote compiles beautiful aromas and flavors. Although not high in alcohol, 13.8%, there is a well-balanced, velvety mouth-feel which compliments the emergence of tannin at the end to lengthen out the finish.
The Russian River Valley is home to many world-class vineyards, and Odyssey is blessed by its position in this fantastic appellation. The three-acre vineyard is tended by the passionate viticulturist, Margaret Chastain, who tends to clones 877, 174 and Estrella that contribute to produce Enkidu’s most complex wine. Syrah in the cool climate of RRV produces more complex and balanced wines than elsewhere, and coupled with multiple clones and solid organic vineyard practices, the Odyssey vineyard produces compelling wines.
With the 2011 Odyssey, the normal 25% whole-cluster addition to the fermentation was reduced to 15% in response to the vintage. The stems will contribute a spice component along with adding structure. The grapes underwent a native yeast fermentation after a four-day ambient soak. We pumped over once daily before fermentation began, and then punched down twice daily during fermentation. Over the years I have reduced the amount of new French oak to < 20%. The result is a wine not in conflict with the oak, but integrated, showcasing the complex fruit. In barrel for 16 months, the wine was then bottled unfiltered.