Stolpman is a wild place, with jackrabbits the size of coyotes and a fun rope swing that drops you into a swimming hole where if you don’t scramble out fast enough, you are likely to get a bite or 2 from angry carp.
Running through the estate is where you really get a sense for the limestone there, an utter rarity in CA and is absolutely one of the secrets to Pete Stolpman’s aromatically complex, vibrant wines.
Each year, the Stolpmans designate one block of the vineyard for the full time farm workers at the estate to manage entirely on their own. Staying within the general principles of the Stolpman farming philosophy, la cuadrilla or “the crew” make all the farming decisions, from pruning to harvest. In return, the Stolpmans give 100% of the profits back to the workers. Pete says it’s the best motivational tool they could have ever put into place; this piece of ownership breeds loyalty and immense pride in their work.
The 2017 is wonderfully aromatic, dark and intense and loaded with garrigue-scented dark red berries. Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate poured praise down on this humble 100% estate grown blend of Syrah, Sangiovese and Grenache calling it “an amazing value”.
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The 2017 La Cuadrilla is a blend of 55% Syrah, 27% Sangiovese and 18% Grenache. It has a medium ruby-purple color and has pretty aromatics of fresh red cherries and cranberry with sliced blueberry, lilac, black cherries, warm earth and meaty/spicy touches in the background. Medium to full-bodied, it gives up loads of wonderfully ripe fruit in the mouth with firm, grainy tannins and juicy freshness, finishing long with gobs of sweet fruit. Yum!
-93 pts, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
The Cuadrilla is a great choice for anything off the grill, from burgers to slow cooked, BBQ pork shoulder. A flat-out delicious bottle of wine.