About Zaca Mesa Reserve Syrah 2016:
The Mesa Reserve Syrah represents the best of Mesa top vineyards, focusing on exciting younger Syrah blocks. These younger blocks showcase high-density vine spacing and new clonal material, offering a great contrast to the older Syrah vines on the property.
Robust and concentrated, this 2016 Mesa Reserve Syrah is a knockout. Dark notes of charred black fruits and chocolate are lifted by dried purple flowers and wet clay. The palate is round, carrying flavors of blackberry compote and sweet tobacco. Chewy tannins are balanced by fresh cherries and a blend of baking spices, complements of French oak aging.
21 months in 10% new French oak.
Since 1997, the vineyard and their winemaking practices have been focused on growing and producing excellent terroir-driven, Rhône-style wines. With this concentrated direction, Zaca Mesa wines have consistently received many 90+ scores throughout our history.
At Zaca Mesa, they have embraced the Code of Sustainable Winegrowing to ensure the health and sustainability of the vineyard, employees, neighbors, and environment. To foster a healthier environment, they use organic products, conserve energy and water, and efficiently use materials to reduce waste. The vineyard only farms one-third of their total acreage, leaving open space for wildlife and to preserve natural groundwater. The goal is to achieve balance in the vineyard by learning to work with nature and viewing the estate as one living, breathing system.
The best of Mesa top vineyards, focusing on exciting younger Syrah blocks. These younger blocks showcase high-density vine spacing and new clonal material, offering a great contrast to the older Syrah vines on the property.
About Zaca Mesa Winery:
Zaca Mesa Winery & Vineyards was founded in 1973 by John Cushman and five friends, who purchased the property the year prior. As the third winery established in Santa Barbara County, experimentation was an integral part of Zaca Mesa’s early days. Several different varieties were planted to see which grapes would be the best suited to the estate’s unique terroir. After many trials, Zaca Mesa’s first winemaker, Ken Brown, planted Syrah in 1978, establishing Zaca Mesa as the first to plant Syrah in Santa Barbara County. This block of Syrah remains the oldest Syrah block on the Central Coast and is now known as the Black Bear Block.
Years later, Zaca Mesa produced thefirst Central Coast wine to achieve a Wine Spectator Top Ten at #6, the 1993 Zaca Mesa Syrah, created by Winemaker Daniel Gehrs. It became the wine of choice at the White House on February 1, 1996 for the French President Jacques Chirac at the official State Dinner.
As a pioneer in Santa Barbara County, Zaca Mesa has been a training ground for many great winemakers, earning the moniker “Zaca University” and further establishing Zaca Mesa as a renowned producer of estate-grown Central Coast wines. Continuing Zaca Mesa’s legacy today is Winemaker Kristin Bryden, who became head winemaker in 2016. Along with Assistant Winemaker Andrew Keil, Bryden takes a hands-on, artisanal approach to crafting quality wines that reflect Zaca Mesa’s unique site.