2012 Sine Qua Non Grenache Stein, USA, California, Central Coast, Ventura, Wine review

Deep ruby in color.  The nose has nice cherries, black cherries and black raspberries with baking spice and a bit of pepper.  Full bodied with a great texture.  Nice backbone of acidity.  On the palate, black raspberries with some black cherries.  This is young and needs a few years to develop but quite tasty right now.  Not a monster wine by any means.  Will work with medium and big foods.  

2012 Saxum James Berry Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

This continues to improve.  Inky purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, white pepper and grilled meats.  On the palate, this has a nice juicy acidity.  Medium tannins.  Black raspberries layered with char and earth.  Good finish.  No hint of alcohol or heat.  Needs bigger and/or spicy foods.  This wine still needs about five years to peak.  Then should be good for another 15 after that.  Very concentrated.  

2014 Sine Qua Non Syrah Piranha Waterdance, USA, California, Wine Review

81% Syrah, 8% Petite Sirah, 6% Mourvèdre, 4% Touriga Nacional and 1% Graciano.  Inky purple in color.  This is very different for an SQN wine.  It does have 15.8% Alc but there is no sign of that.  The nose has black raspberries, blueberries, some roasted meats and herbs and black pepper.  On the palate, this is almost elegant.  It has a refined quality but also the intensity and concentration one expects.  Black raspberry and blueberry fruit on the palate with underlying coffee grounds and char.  Great texture.  Long finish.  This is still quite young and has some upside even as good as it

2014 Turtle Rock Willow's Cuvee Turtle Rock Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

This is excellent.  From a winery who will undoubtedly raise their prices once the critics start scoring their wines.  This is a GSM blend.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has cherries, black raspberries, char, leather and spice.  On the palate, this has a great texture.  Firm yet sinewy.  Great black raspberry and cherry fruit with some spice.  Deep and will undoubtedly age well.  Good finish.  Works great on its own or with food.  A winery to follow.  

2012 Jaffurs Syrah Thompson Vineyard, USA, California, Santa Barbara, Wine Review

Purple in color.  The nose is great with black raspberries, black pepper, and some roasted meats.  Very deep.  On the  palate, this is still young but drinking great.  Black raspberry fruit with some roasted herbs and some spice.  Great texture.  Deep and tightly layered.  Long finish.  This will develop more complexity but if you like lush, delicious warm climate Syrah, this one is fine now.   

2012 Tablas Creek Esprit de Tablas

40% Mourvedre, 30% Syrah, 21% Grenache and 9% Counoise.  Tablas Creek is making some of the best Rhone varietal wines anywhere and they have been for 20 years.  Purple in color.  The nose is nice, deep and has a nice complexity.  Plums, dark cherries, slight char, black pepper and spice.  With air, purple fruits come to the forefront.  On the palate, this is young and still not yet at peak IMO.  Plums, black raspberries layered with char and spice.  A hint of muskiness as well.  Lovely mouthfeel.  Great texture.  Nice finish.  These wines are built to age and while the 2012 is more open tha

2007 Sine Qua Non Syrah Labels

Pop and pour, this wine is in a great place right now.  Purple/ruby in color.  The nose has black raspberries, white pepper, slight roasted meats and with air, blueberries and floral notes.  Very nice.  On the palate, this is layered and complex.  Plenty of black raspberry fruit, slight blueberries along with an underlying char.  Great balance.  It is actually a bit soft in texture from what I expected which is not a bad thing.  Complex and almost seamless.  Not sure if it gets better, but certainly no hurry, this has decades left.  Great wine.