CAFE SOCIETY Red Blend Santa Barbara 2017 *Grady Top Pick
CAFE SOCIETY Red Blend 2017
Santa Barbara, CA
43% Mourvèdre, 34% Grenache, 23% Syrah, from vineyards around Santa Barbara. We immediately fell for this wine even before we saw the price point. It has such an attractive, irresistible, perfumed nose of raspberry, red cherry, blackberry, and bramble, with a slight earthiness, before going into a palate with gently grainy tannins, a light peppery spice, and fresh acidity. A wine easy enough to drink on its own and complex enough to pair with red meat.
The duo behind Black Sheep Finds are Peter Hunken and Amy Christine. Peter got his start in winemaking in 2001 at Stolpman Vineyards and was the Assistant Winemaker there until 2006. He is also one of the founding members of Piedrasassi and Holus Bolus wines. During this time he gained experience working with Syrah, Grenache, Sangiovese, Pinot Noir, Cabernet and Roussanne. After meeting Amy spitting wine over the winery drains in Lompoc in 2004, they founded Black Sheep Finds with the arrival of the 2005 vintage. Amy's foray into the wine world began with a childhood dream to win an Oscar. While she waited for her golden statue, she worked as a sommelier at one of LA’s finest restaurants. This translated into a weekend jaunt to Santa Barbara where she met her future husband and fellow Black Sheep, Peter Hunken. A whirlwind romance involving a terrible, but cheap, apartment in Koreatown, countless hours of Ryan Adams and Damien Rice songs and bottles upon bottles of Muller Catoir Riesling turned serious. On a long hike in Santa Barbara in 2005, the idea of Black Sheep Finds was bantered about and just a few months later the first Syrah grapes for Hocus Pocus were being made into wine. Unlike the Oscar it all happened so fast.
"This is a bright and fresh interpretation of a Mouvedre-based Rhone blend. It has aromas of fresh strawberries and dusty undertones of forrest floor. It can be enjoyed with a slight chill in the warmer months. This wine should be enjoyed now and over the next 2-3 years."