After working with winemaker Jon Philips on two other Pinot Noir projects, Kevin and Peggy Brown asked Jon to continue his work and add a Syrah to their wine offerings. Massalia's grapes were grown on a hillside vineyard by the Neal family on Dry Creek Road in Sonoma County. Approximately 4% Viognier was added during fermentation to create this Rhône inspired Syrah. The result is luscious with a nose of blackberry and boysenberry, full bodied with lovely cedar and mocha notes on the finish.
About the name Massilia – There are several legends of the origin of Syrah grapes in Northern Rhône. One of these legends comes from one of its homonyms - Shiraz. Shiraz is a very old city in Iran which produced a very well-known Shirazi wine. Legends claim the Syrah grape originated in Shiraz and then was brought to Rhône by Phocaeans to their colony around Marseilles. At that time in history, Marseilles was known as Massilia. The grape would then later have made its way to northern Rhône, which was never colonized by the Phocaeans. The legend connecting Syrah with the city of Shiraz in Iran continued in an 1826 book Œnologie Française, where it was stated that according to the tradition of the neighborhood, the Syrah plant was originally brought from Shiraz in Persia by one of the “hermits of the mountain.” While no documentary evidence exists to back up this legend we chose to name the wine Massilia because hey, it’s the stuff of legends and so is the wine. And those that know Kevin Brown often refer to him as the “hermit of the mountain”, spending much time perched atop Rio Crest.
Priced at USD $88.00/bottle.