2016 AmByth Estate Sauvignon Blanc Orange Wine
Region: Santa Barbara County < California
Grapes: Sauvignon Blanc
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: certified organic farming, loam and sand soil, foot trod, fermented on skins inItalian terracotta amphora for 13 months, pressed and rested 2 months before bottling. Unfined, unfiltered, no SO2, 11.7%
Winemaker: Phillip and Gelert Hart
AmByth Estate, one of the only wineries in Paso that meets the Rock Juice standards, has new blood at the helm, with founder Phillip Hart’s son, Gelert taking over. The grapes for this wine were sourced from Coquelicot Vineyard in Santa Barbara County in order to help the family supplement the exceedingly low yields of their estate vineyards, which – being dry-armed- suffered immensely during the drought years. The fruit must have been excellent quality because you can’t hide behind fancy tricks with the minimalist winemaking philosophy Phillip pioneered. Technology is out the door in this place – there is a press, but everything else is done by hand (or foot!) and only clay eggs or terracotta amphora are used for fermentation and aging. Gravity is used to move things around and the winery is temperature controlled via its location built into the side of a hill. No fining, no filtering and no sulfur and only 11.7% alcohol means you can and should crush the whole bottle. We also love that it wraps up all of the tropical fruit of Sauvignon Blanc with so much acidity and freshness! The skin maceration brings out the peach and yellow floral notes but there’s no scratchy tannin – it’s completely smooth and silky. We’ll be cracking this baby all summer with grilled meat, sausage especially, and curried salads – yum!