Black currents (cassis), blueberries and blackberries are consistent fruit characters of the syrah from the Coastview Vineyard, and the fortification process preserves and highlights all of these qualities.
The Savannah Chanelle port is made from the same wonderful Coastview syrah grapes from which we also make the Insider’s syrah, and the vineyard designated syrah. We chose this particular grape because of it’s intense depth of fruit accompanied with it’s amazing full bodied character.
When making port, I wait for the syrah to ferment down from 25% sugar to about 10% sugar. I then take the partially fermented syrah juice from the fermenter and put it into a stainless steel tank where I add the high proof brandy to arrest the fermentation. From here on, the yeast slowly die off due to the high alcohol, but they continue to ferment through another +/- 2% or 3% sugar. Once the fermentation has quieted down, it goes directly to barrel where it ages for 3 years prior to bottling. Unlike dry table wine, the port is not topped or sulfited. Whereas this negligence would create a heavily oxidized wine with the potential to turn into vinegar rather rapidly, the slow oxidation of the port creates the desired “nutty” characteristics that we crave for in port.