One barrel each.
That's all we have of the three wines that make up our inaugural offering. There will be more in the future (and some other surprises), but for now, we are excited to share our humble beginnings with you.
Our 2014 Shypoke Charbono is our most feminine expression of Charbono. During fermentation, Benoit and I were smitten by what we would later recognize as a signature of Shypoke vineyard, the aromatics. Every time we put our noses in a glass it would burst forth with a beautiful bouquet of wildflowers. The dark color belies the high-toned elegance of the wine itself, with red and blue fruit overlaying soft, silky tannin. It was aged in neutral oak for only 10 months—it was in such a beautiful place that we decided we had to capture it then and there. Unfined and unfiltered, this wine was bottled, corked, and labeled by hand.
The first time Benoit opened the bung of our 2015 Tofanelli Charbono barrel he paused, looked at me, and asked, “Are you afraid of the dark?” The wine he lovingly refers to as “The Beast” is a very different expression of the varietal from our Shypoke. It's almost completely opaque with a dark purple rim, and is sure to stain any teeth that come anywhere near it. Aromas of plum and sweet cigar tobacco lead you into the layers of plush, dark fruit and spice on the palate. It's density is kept firmly in check by an incredible amount of refined tannin. It's very open and giving right now, but will surely reward those who stash it in a dark, cold corner of their cellar.
Smelling the 2015 Shypoke Charbono during fermentation was like going home again. I was thrilled that the trademark Shypoke floral aromatics were back. This time, however, we were rewarded by mother nature, who gave us all the hallmarks of our '14 in a more robust package in '15. A more classical expression of the varietal, it's marked by highly complex aromatics alongside a focused purity of dark red and black fruit on the palate. Both of our 2015's spent 18 months in neutral oak before being bottled unfined and unfiltered.
We've chosen to offer these first two vintages together to better express our intent with this creative endeavor- not to produce a single wine, but to bring attention to a wide variety of expressions of an overlooked varietal. If you have any other questions about the wines or our project, please feel free to get in touch.