The 2013 Francis Tannahill Sundown is a deep garnet color from the rim to the center. Upon opening, spicy aromas of black pepper, fir tips, cinnamon, graphite and pencil shavings lead the way, quickly followed by notes of violets, plum, smoked meat, cassis and blackberry. The 2013 vintage started as one of the earliest harvests in Oregon, but midway through the weather turned and subsequently made this one of the latest. The length of hang time shows on the palate with great complexity, intensity, and focus on the attack. Like the nose, the attack starts out spicy with flavors of smoke, black pepper and underbrush. As the wine moves across the palate, the violet and cassis flavors blossom. The tannins are broad and rich with a vein of juicy acidity running through the wine. The finish is long and intense with great elegance and lingering flavors of crushed rocks. If you want to drink this now, please decant for an hour or two if otherwise this will age in a cool cellar for the next 10 – 20 years.
This wine is a blend of three varieties from two vineyards – 56% Grenache, 43% Syrah and 1% Viognier from the Sundown Vineyard and Deux Vert vineyard. Sundown is LIVE certified and owned and managed by Don and Traute Moore. Planted on a stunning southeast facing terraced slope on sandy, powdery soil mostly composed of volcanic ash, the vineyard is loaded with chunks of quartz over hard bedrock. Sundown sits at a fairly high altitude which allows the nights to be cool even in this very warm climate. These changes in temperature give a density to the wine while retaining great finesse. The grapes from the two vineyards were fermented separately in French oak, upright, open top tanks and pumped over 1 - 3 times a day with 100% whole clusters. After the fermentation, they were pressed lightly and settled overnight then racked to French oak. The wine was racked, blended and bottled in early December 2015 after spending 24 months in barrel.