06 Apr Syrahs of the World
This collection includes some of the best Syrahs from around the world, starting with superstar producer K Vintners in Washington, moving through the rockstars at Ojai Vineyards in California, and finally highlighting two hidden treasures from Domaine de Rosiers in Cote Rotie. Syrah is a complex and versatile grape that thrives in many different winegrowing areas. It can run the range from inky and fruity (classic California) to savory and earthy (Cote Rotie).
2012 K Vintners Syrah “Hustler,” Columbia Valley, Washington
On Sale $129.99
Still in barrel at the time of this tasting, the 2012 Syrah The Hustler is a blockbuster-styled Syrah that’s overflowing with notions of sweet red and black fruits, toasted bread, cured meats and cedar. Only made in special vintages (it was previously made in ’03, ’07 and ’09) and aged 38 months in French oak, it’s full-bodied, decadent and layered, with a weightless, elegant, seamless feel. Coming all from the Morrison Lane Vineyard (it’s actually the Morrison Lane Syrah with extended barrel aging), it should be ready to go on release and dish out tons of pleasure over the following decade or more. The extended elevage has given this a more upfront feel, yet I suspect it will also allow it age more slowly as well.
95-97 Points, The Wine Advocate
2013 Ojai Vineyards Syrah Bien Nacido Vineyard, Santa Maria Valley, California
On Sale $39.99
The 2013 Syrah Bien Nacido Vineyard is pure class. Rich, seamless and inviting, yet with vibrant beams of salinity and tannin beneath, the 2013 stands out because of its impeccable balance. Nothing is out of place. Cool-climate peppery, gamy notes add an attractive upper-register. Lavender, violets and inky blue/purplish fruit are infused into the layered, vivid finish. With time in the glass, the 2013 develops a super-appealing feel of vertical structure. The 2013 is very young. It is also very beautiful.
95 Points, Antonio Galloni
2013 Ojai Vineyards Syrah Roll Ranch Vineyard, Ventura County, California
On Sale $39.99
The 2013 Syrah Roll Ranch is a dark, heady wine. Truffle, smoke, lavender and blueberry jam give the 2013 much of its exotic personality. Super-ripe and racy in the glass, the 2013 tastes like it was picked on the later side. Even so, the Roll Ranch retains the very classic Ojai mid-weight sense of structure. This is one of the more exuberant, flamboyant wines in the Ojai range this year, but firm tannins extend the finish and give the wine a closing burst of energy.
96 Points, Antonio Galloni
About Domaine de Rosiers:
Domaine de Rosiers is located in the heart of Ampuis and is owned and managed by the young Maxime Gourdain, who has recently taken over the estate from his uncle, Louis Drevon. The property consists of some 19 acres broken into 28 parcels, with plots located on the coveted hill of Ampuis and in the famed Rozier vineyard. All the wines produced here are stunning, marked by a striking balance of pure muscle paired with complexity and grace.
2012 Domaine de Rosiers Cote Rotie “Drevon”
On Sale $49.99
This lovely cuvée from Domaine de Rosiers flaunts a gorgeous ruby coloration. The bouquet reveals red plums and Asian spices. Loaded with graphite, grilled and smoked meats, it is compact, dense, and enduring. This is a wine with purpose. The “Drevon” has been aged for 18 months in barrels that are a maximum of 5 years old. The barrels are 25% new.
2013 Domaine de Rosiers Cote Rotie “Besset”
On Sale $64.99
This is a single-vineyard cuvée from the Besset vineyard that is situated at the northern tip of the appellation, at the top of the slope. Besset is very steep and considered a Grand Cru quality vineyard. These wines are particularly complex and dense, presenting intense flavors of smoked meats and slate. Never more than 1,500 bottles are made. This wine is aged in a maximum of 50% new oak for 18 months.