The Lechuza Estate
- Lechuza is a family run, miniscule production winery that makes most of its wine from estate vineyards. Their winery and vineyards are located near the end of the Valle de Guadalupe at an elevation of 900 ft, approximately 12 miles from the Pacific. Vineyards slope gently to the northwest.
- In addition to using the fruit from their estate vineyard, which is organically farmed, they source their chardonnay from a select site in Valle de San Vicente very close to sea level less than a mile from the Pacific.
- The term "family operated" runs very true to course here, with their entire staff for harvest consisting of 6 people, one of whom is their precocious 4 year old.
- Their "Amantes" and "Nebbiolo" are featured on the wine list of the French Laundry.
Total production: 5 wines, 2,200 cases
2016 Amantes - Lechuza
Tasting Notes and Drinking Window:
Amantes translates to 'friendship' in English, and while there are many reasons one could apply this name to the wine, the way it manages to incorporate the complex voices of the different grapes included in the blend has to be considered a starting point. If only the diverse voices that make up humanity could work constructively and compliment each other as do the voices of each grape in this wine. To say this wine is something special would be a gross understatement. To say it represents 'friendship" is an expression well put.
Essentially a field blend, the blend that is Amantes changes rather dramatically each year and this vintage represents the least diverse, (in terms of grape variety) to date. Having lostthe Tempranillo and Syrah from the 2015, this iteration is perhaps more cohesive with what it has to say better articualted overall. Lechaza's wine are all excel in the catagory of bold strength but this wine is always one of our favorites for how it weds this power with an acid presence that gifts the wine with wings.
352 cases made
Drinking window: Upon release - 10 years
39% Cabernet, 36% Merlot, 25% Nebbiolo
Kristin Schute - American born, now a Mexican citizen
Valle de Guadalupe - Estate vineyards, 900 ft elevation, composed of red clay and sandy loam
Fermented on the skins and seeds in French and American oak barrels, racked and then aged for an astonishing 40 months in French and American oak of 2nd and 3rd use.