Syrah from California and Cote-Rotie

This flight of Syrah takes us from the freshness of new fruit in California, to the development of bottle bouquet in wines from 2003 – excellent all around, featuring different expressions of the same grape over time and over both sides of the Atlantic.

Foxen, Santa Ynez Valley, Williamson-Dore Vineyard, Syrah 2007 As in previous vintages, this wine exudes fruit with a vivaciousness of being freshly squeezed. In addition there is a bit of tar and brown spice. In the mouth the theme continues, with a very supple texture, dense, filling out the entire palate – very nice. The wine is neither fined nor filtered. Produced and bottled in Santa Maria 14.8% purchased for $35.99 at Bottle Barn Foxen

Pierre Gaillard, Cote-Rotie, “Les Viallieres” 2003 This wine has developed some excellent bottle-aged complexity, with a sense of cured meat, coffee, dried cherries and cloves. In the mouth it displays the great ripeness of 2003, a bit of Band-Aid for complexity and the suppleness of age, with a velvety mouthfeel and plenty of acidity – very nice. Les Viallieres is a lieux-dit in the north of the appellation. 15% Viognier is co-fermented with this mostly Syrah wine. The wine was not filtered and bottled as a special selection for North Berkeley Imports, thus the designation of Cuvee Unique. Mis par Pierre Gaillard, proprietaire-recoltant a Malleval 14% purchased for $75.29 at Bottle Barn Pierre Gaillard

DuMol, Russian River Valley, eddie’s patch, Syrah 2003 The fruit in this wine has more of a liqueur-like quality, sweet-appearing with a bit of alcohol poking its head out. In the mouth it is quite plush, with a thickness, making it rich and luxurious – very nice. The grapes for this wine were sourced from the Hoppe Family Vineyard. The wine was aged for 16 months in French oak, 50% of it being new. Proprietors Kerry Murphy and Michael Verlander. The wine is neither fined nor filtered. Produced and bottled in Santa Rosa 15.2% one bottle available at Belmont Wine in San Carlos for $85, this bottle was a gift from a friend DuMol Wines

About RJ

Ray Johnson is the Executive Director of the Wine Business Institute at Sonoma State University. He writes about food and wine, his travels and the business of wine. He makes his home in Sonoma County, California.
This entry was posted in California, Cote-Rotie, Russian River Valley, Santa Barbara County, Santa Ynez Valley, Sonoma County, Syrah and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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