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.

2017 Elqui Wines Syrah, Chile, Elqui Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$28.00USD

Purple in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is nice with tons of black olives.  Also some black raspberries and spice.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, black raspberries, some black olives and a bit of black pepper.  Good finish.  Blind, I would have guessed this was a Crozes Hermitage in large part from all the black olive notes.  Drink over the next five years.  A nice wine with food off the grill (except for seafood).  

2013 Bedrock Wine Co. Syrah Exposition Three Weill a Way Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A

This is 84% Syrah and 16% Viognier from Sonoma.  There are three version of this wine which Robert Parker compared to the three Guigal Lala wines from the northern Rhone.  Luckily, they were not that expensive back on release.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black raspberries, roasted meats, bacon fat, slight dried flowers, spice and char.  Full bodied.  Medium tannins.  On the palate, this seems mature and close to peak.  Flavors of black raspberries, slight blueberries, spice, and a hint of earthiness.  Long finish.  This wine is complex and deep.  This is great on

2018 Fingers Crossed Syrah, USA, California, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$249.00USD

Whoa.  This is a big wine.  It is also Fantastic!  It is 93% Syrah, 3% Roussanne, 2% Grenache and 2% Mourvedre.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black raspberries, blueberries, roasted meats, spices and herbs.  Full  bodied.  Medium to firm tannins.  On the palate, this is delicious.  Deep with loads of black raspberries, blueberries, some black cherries, spice and char.  Long, long finish.  This is great now, but if you can wait five years, it will be even better.  That said, drink over the next ten to fifteen years.  Great on its own, this would work well with Chili

Côte Mas 2023 Rosé Aurore Pays

Vintage: 
2023
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$11.99USD

Summertime is always a great time for rosé, but of course, all year long is even better. Rosé should always be low alcohol with light, bright fruit, and a wine that works with a variety of foods, and should be a wine that is not overly complicated. Côte Mas, which I have reviewed for several vintages, is a consistently good, inexpensive rosé that works well pretty much whenever. This iteration is comprised of mainly Grenache with Cinsault and Syrah. It offers bright strawberry, cranberry and pomegranate, light rhubarb and fresh cherry.

2020 Penfolds Bin 389, Australia, South Australia, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2020
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$55.00USD

This is a 51%/49% blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has cassis, black raspberries, graphite, black pepper, spice and char.  Full bodied.  Firm tannins.  Good balance.  On the palate, this is delicious.  Flavors of cassis, \black cherries, black raspberries, slight herbal note (mint?), spice and char.  Long finish.  This is deep and complex if still very young.  Drink over the next ten to fifteen years.  This is great on its own and will work well with grilled meat, fowl or veggies.
 

2022 Henschke Henry's Seven, Australia, Barossa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2022
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$55.00USD

This is a Rhone blend of 72% Shiraz, 13% Grenache, 12% Mataro, and 3% Viognier.  Deep purple/garnet in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is deep with black raspberries, plums, black cherries, black pepper and dark chocolate.  Full bodied.  Medium tannins.  Good acidity.  On the palate, this is tasty with depth and complexity.  Flavors of black raspberries, black cherries, dark chocolate, spice and char.  Long finish.  This is still very young and will improve.  Drink over the next eight to twelve years.  very nice on its own, this would be a nice pairing with Indian cuisine.  

2021 John Duval Wines Shiraz Entity, Australia, Barossa, Wine Re

Vintage: 
2021
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

This is a classic Barossa Shiraz.  Inky purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose is great with black raspberries, black licorice and slight violet notes.  Full bodied.  Medium to firm tannins.  On the palate, this is delicious.  Flavors of black raspberries, black cherries, spice, black pepper and slight roasted meats.  Long finish.  This is still young and will benefit from a few more years in a good cellar.  Drink over the next ten to fifteen.  This is great on its own and will work well with roasted meats or root vegetables.  Excellent value.

Greenwing 2022 Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley

Vintage: 
2021
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

Washington’s Columbia Valley has long produced Cabernet. Though vine plantings started in the 1960s, it was the 1930s that saw the plantings of traditional grapes like Cabernet and Chardonnay. Now the Valley is well know and producing some very good wine. On initial opening of the 2022 Greenwing Cabernet, there is noticeable jammy fruit and as first an overt sweetness. But this Cabernet needs time to evolve and within 45 minutes the sweet fruit has subsided and the tannins and oak take over, giving you a quality Cabernet.

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