Hello Everyone, welcome to the Devium 2018 Fall release,
The release this year is my 2016 Elevation Vineyard Marsanne, the first white wine under the Devium label. Elevation Vineyard, as some of you I’m sure already know, is a site owned and farmed by the team at Tertulia Cellars. In 2016, Sleight of Hand was approached about setting up a long term relationship to work with head trained Syrah and Grenache (the Ziggy Stardust block). Alongside the red varieties had been planted a small block of head trained Marsanne. We were offered this fruit as well in 2016, and decided that it was a better fit for Devium than for Sleight of Hand. I had never intended to work with Marsanne, but when the vines look like this (see below), you don’t say no.
The 2016 vintage is a year chock full of personality. We had a cooler than average August, which slowed down the VERY rapid ripening that we saw from a mild winter, spring and early summer. The cooler late summer weather helped us to retain acidity and keep sugars in check. These factors led to what I believe is a banner year for Devium, including the 2016 Marsanne.
Marsanne is a tricky grape, it has a tendency toward high alcohol and low acid, which is clearly not the Devium style. It is also well known for its mouthfeel and complex savory flavor profile. The trick was to make a wine that is true to my vision for Devium, while also letting the grape shine. My solution was to pick very early to keep the alcohol down and maintain fresh acidity, then to give the wine extended time in neutral oak to develop the mouthfeel. The wine is so complex and ever changing that a definitive tasting note is difficult, but here is my best effort: The aromatics open with musk, melon, fresh thyme and a hint of marshmallow cream. As it sits open, the profile continues to shift toward the savory side with the thyme coming more into prominence and a bit of honeysuckle beginning to emerge. The palate is all about texture; it is slightly phenolic, with a richness in the midpalate that belies the 12% alcohol. Flavors tend toward the floral/savory/non-fruit spectrum, with more honeysuckle, thyme, and a stony mineral quality. On the finish, it lingers with vanilla cream without losing its freshness.
Having watched this wine for over 20 months in barrel and a further 4 months in bottle, I have a feeling that it will age and continue to develop for at least the next 5-7 years, and possibly longer. There is a “put together” and wise character to this wine that I can’t quite put my finger on, but it feels like it has seen a thing or two and is here for the long haul. Please follow the links below to order:
2016 Elevation Vineyard Marsanne 3 Pack: $102
2016 Elevation Vineyard Marsanne 6 Pack: $192
2016 Elevation Vineyard Marsanne 12 Pack: $360
Shipping orders will begin going out on November 5th. Pick up orders will be available in Walla Walla immediately, in Sodo, orders will be ready to pick up on December 1st.
If you have any questions or need anything at all, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more info on Devium or to read the summer newsletter, head to deviumwine.com.
Thank you all so much for your continued interest and support. Devium would not exist without you.