Top Ten California Syrahs - 2016

I tend to taste and drink a lot of wine over the course of a year. I am in a few tasting groups, sometimes the wines are consumed at various local wine store tastings and a number drunk with friends and family.

2015 Andremily Syrah No. 4, USA, California, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$130.00USD

One of my favorite Syrahs in the world right now.  A blend of 90% Syrah, 6% Viognier, and 4% Mourvèdre.  These are big Syrahs that need a lot of time (depending how you like them) to hit peak.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black raspberries, black leather, roasted meats and herbs, and slight floral notes.  Full bodied.  Exuberant.  On the palate, black raspberries, blueberries, with underlying smoke and pepper.  Great texture.  Long finish.  This needs another five to seven years until peak and should be good for another ten to twelve after that.  It is delicious n

2018 Tablas Creek Patelin de Tablas, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$20.00USD

This is a blend of 40% Syrah, 22% Grenache, 21% Mourvedre, 3% Counoise, and 3% Terret Noir checking in at 13% abv.  Screw capped.  This is a nice value play in easy to drink, Cal Rhone styled wines.  Purple in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is nice with black raspberries, black cherries, slight pepper and an herbal note (chervil?).  Medium bodied.  On the palate, this drinks easy.  Little tannins.  Nice black cherry fruit with a touch of black pepper.  Good acidity.  Moderate finish.  This will work well with most meats, fowl or veggies.  Drink over the next five to seven years.

2016 Brave & Maiden Estate Syrah Limited, USA, California, Santa Maria, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

This is a very nice Syrah from California's Central Coast.  It is a big, fruit forward Syrah.  Alc. 15%  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose is nice with black raspberries, black pepper, roasted meats and herbs.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this is is juicy with big black raspberry fruit.  Delicious.  Some depth and complexity.  Long finish.  It could use a few more years to sort itself out, but is very tasty right now.  This drinks great on its own and will work great with chili, stews or a burger.  Drink over the next seven to ten years.  

2014 Torrin Syrah Shadow Canyon Vineyard, USA, California, York Mountain, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$70.00USD

My first time trying this particular vineyard although Torrin is a favorite.  100% Syrah.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose is nice with boysenberries and some black pepper.  On the palate, medium tannins.  Nice black raspberry fruit.  Some depth.  Good finish.  An outstanding wine, but not up to the rarefied air of other vineyards in the Torrin lineup.  It should still improve a bit as it continues to mature over the next five years and drink well for ten more after that.  This probably would be helped by some fatty fried foods or meats.

2016 Bedrock Wine Co. Syrah Griffin's Lair, USA, California, Sonoma, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

Another top notch Syrah from Bedrock.  Consumed over two days, it was better on day 2.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose has black cherries, black raspberries, black pepper and char.  Medium to full bodied.  On the palate, this has slightly restrained, black raspberry fruit over char and slight earth.  Deep but tight.  Good balance.  If drinking soon, give this some air.  It should continue to improve for another five to eight years and be good for ten more after that.  It drinks well on its own but would work better with some fatty/fried foods.   

2015 Reynvaan Family Vineyards Syrah Foothills Reserve, Washington, Walla Walla, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$75.00USD

Reynvaan makes some great Syrah's in Washington state.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is nice with boysenberries, slight burnt rubber, black pepper and slight bacon fat.  Full bodied.  Nice acidity.  On the palate, the boysenberries come thru over a nice minerality.  Long finish.  This is drinking well right now.  it is not robust but very concentrated.  Drink over the next eight to ten years.  This will work well with Indian food or stews.  

2013 Saxum Terry Hoage Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Willow Creek, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$90.00USD

This is 57% Syrah, 29% Grenache, and 14% Mourvedre.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose is nice with black raspberries, black cherries, black pepper, slight roasted meats and herbs, and spice.  Full bodied.  Fruit forward.  Quite tasty.  This is drinking well if still young.  Lots of jammy black raspberry fruit over char and some black pepper.  Maybe a bit of black cherries.  This is a real crowd pleaser.  It should continue to evolve over the next ten to twelve years.  it drinks great on its own and will work well with roasted veggies or meats.  

2019 Jaffurs Syrah, USA, California, Santa Barbara, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

My first time trying this vintage.  One of my go to value wines every vintage.  Ownership changed hands a few years back and they haven't missed a beat.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose is great with black raspberries, roasted meat, slight black olive and black pepper.  Full bodied.  On the palate, this has a great texture.  Rich but with suppleness.  Lots of black raspberry fruit over spice and slight earthiness.  Medium tannins.  This is obviously young but should drink well for the next seven to ten years.  It drinks well on its own and will work well with roasted or grille

2012 Carlisle Syrah Papa's Block, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$60.00USD

This is my favorite Carlisle Syrah.  At age 8, it really was a bit young to be opened, but it was delicious after a couple of hours of air.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black raspberries, bacon fat, black olives and white pepper.  Full bodied.  Light tannins.  On the palate, black raspberry fruit over a charred earthiness.  Great balance.  Lively.  Deep.  Long finish.  This probably will continue to mature for another five to seven years, and be good for another ten after that.  It drinks great on its own and will work well with fatty meat dishes but also Indian or hea

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