Estate Syrah X Block

Named in honor of “The Executive Officer,” who is second in command on a Naval ship, The XO also pays homage to our X Block. The first Syrah planted in cool-climate California, the X Block is still considered a visionary choice in Santa Barbara. Far before anyone believed Syrah could ripen, The Miller Family grafted some Syrah in 1987. To everyone’s surprise, this small portion of Syrah excelled. Today it is one of Bien Nacido’s most valued blocks. The Estate X Block rows always have very shot berries, which leads to a very concentrated black color. Within this inky black wine, elements of espresso, meat and sage draw you in. The XO represents the third Pillar of Bien Nacido. In some vintages, as little as 44 cases are produced. This wine does not have any Viognier as part of the fermentation, and is often foot treaded in small 1 ton fermenters. 18 months spent in 25% new French Oak rounds off the tight grained tannins.

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Vineyard Sites

700 ft. elevation. Vines face directly south 16 miles from the Pacific Ocean.



Vine Age

Grafted in 1987


2.3 tons/acre






96 Points Antonio Galloni
95 Points Robert Parker
94+ Points Wine Advocate
94+ Points Jeb Dennuck

Purchase Wine
96 Points Antonio Galloni
95 Points Robert Parker
94+ Points Wine Advocate
94+ Points Jeb Dennuck


Monterey shaly loams. Grafted in 1987 and California’s first cool-climate Syrah.