Winery: Progressive winemaker David Swift Phinney was “introduced to wine, how it was made, and got hooked” during time spent in Italy in 1995, upon his return to the States he took a job as a harvest worker at Robert Mondavi. It was there that he decided “that if he was going to work this hard, it would eventually have to be for himself”, and in 1998 Orin Swift Cellars was founded [Orin is his father’s middle name and Swift is his mother’s maiden name]. Today the company has grown into an international brand that includes 300 acres in southwest France along with projects in Spain, Italy, Corsica, Argentina and other locations. However, his mission still remains a small, “passionate team of friends and family dedicated to making great wine”. He is renowned for wines that “are unapologetically full-flavored and intense, yet with a backbone of structure that holds it all in place”.
Winemaking: Orin Swift has 300 acres [120 hectares] of vineyards in the Cotes Catalanes, a sub-appellation of the Roussillon in southern France. The vineyards are located in the Pyrénées-Orientales mountain range, in an area known for its intense heat and minimal amounts of vegetation. Planted over 60 years ago, vines grown in soil mostly of black schist, along with small amounts of granite and limestone. “The intense heat from the daytime sun is reflected back to the gnarled, head trained vines at night, increasing ripeness while maintaining acidity. The result is a very low yield (half ton per acre), but makes for a dark, concentrated, and finesse driven wine that embodies this singular region.” Aged in 30% new French oak barrels for 18 months, then 5 months in the bottle.
Tasting Notes: Inky violet in colour with aromas of black currant, black pepper, soft vanilla and oak. Black currant and blueberry jam flavours extend across a backbone of toasted oak and chocolate. Dark fruit flavours and silky tannins span the lengthy finish and are highlighted by crushed black peppercorn and hints of licorice. An interesting juxtaposition of assertive, concentrated flavours that strikingly possess a soft, lush disposition. Fantastic on its own or with a wide variety of dishes, gamey cheese, barbeque, Asian & Indian dishes, and even chocolate.
Blend of Grenache, Syrah & Carignan
Cotes Catalanes IGP
Produced and Bottled by Dept 66
Enjoy now thru 2020