2014 Carlisle Syrah Sonoma County, USA, California, Wine Review

These are my go to wines for later in the night when you just want a bit more wine.  I buy a bunch every vintage and drink through them quickly, not that they won't last, but as they are really great values.  So, I was a bit surprised to see I still had a 2014 left.  Screw capped.  On opening, this was singing.  Purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries. Also some black pepper and a bit of roasted herbs.  On the palate, this is lush but also deep.  Gulpable but at the same time it has some complexity.  Nice finish.  Drinks well on its own but would go well with heartier foods.  

2012 Epoch Estate Wines Authenticity Paderewski Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

71% Syrah, 28% Mourvedre and 1% Viognier.  This is a gorgeous wine that is drinking great right now but still has some maturation to come.  Purple in color.  On of the cool things about Viognier is it make Syrah more opaque.  Another is that it has lifting aromatics which carry the Syrah and Mourvedre along with it.  In this case, just a gorgeous nose.  Black raspberries, roasted herbs, grilled meats, white pepper, musky earthiness all just explode from the glass.  On the palate, this has a lovely velvety texture.  Good balance.  Lots of black raspberry fruit with underlying earthiness.  It

2009 Cuvelier Los Andes Grand Vin, Argentina, Valle de Uco, Wine Review

70% Malbec, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Syrah, 5% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot.  From the family that owns Leoville Poyferre in Bordeaux.  Purple/ruby in color.  The nose is warm and slightly musty (not in an off way).  Also has some cassis and plums.  On the palate, this drinks like a Bordeaux; fruit, tobacco and earth.  Black raspberries and plums.  Slight tannins.  It has a nice depth and seems to be closing in on maturity.  A bit soft but within reason.  Would work with roasted or grilled meats quite well.  No hurry, but won't get better and probably should be drunk in the next five years.  

2010 Campesino Syrah Sangiacomo Old Lakeville Vineyard, USA. California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Nice to revisit this wine.  It is starting to really hit its stride at this point although it did continue to open after popping the cork.  Purple in color.  The nose is deep with leather, iodine, boysenberries and a slight grilled meat component.  On the palate, this has a cooler climate profile.  Boysenberry fruit.  Layers of dry leather.  Good balance.  Medium to full bodied.  Would work well with a wide variety of foods.  It has depth and a nice complexity but also drinks easy.  Good finish.  

2005 Saxum 44 Month Barrel Age James Berry Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

This was an experiment Justin Smith did back in 2005.  He let the wine stay in barrels for 44 months before bottling it.  This extended ageing as it is called is interesting.  One might think the wine would be ready earlier but conversely, it seems to take even longer for the wines to be ready to drink.  This one is now in a great place and if you have one, consider popping the cork.  A GSM blend, but mostly Syrah.  Purple in color.  The nose is great with black raspberries, iodine, decayed meats, leather, slight bacon fat and an earthy/musk.  On the palate, this has a wonderful lightness a

2008 Grey Stack Cellars The Muldoon Greywacke Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley, Wine Review

A very nice example of a cooler climate Syrah.  At age 10, this is just sort of chugging along on its way, but not yet, at maturity.  Purple in color.  The nose is black raspberries with some black olives and slight bacon fat.  Very much a Northern Rhone profile.  On the palate, there is a grilled black raspberry fruit quality to this.  Slightly sour fruit.  Some slight heat on the finish.  Overall, very solid and enjoyable.  Food friendly.  Perhaps still some upside to go.  

NV Sean Thackrey Pleiades XI Old Vines, USA, California, Wine Review

Sean Thackrey is one of the world's great winemakers who hangs out in Bolinas California.  This is basically a field blend of what doesn't make his top Cuvees.  Although it is non-vintage, each Cuvee carries a Roman Numeral designate.  This is XI, but the current release is XXV.  This wine is approximately 16 years old and was really made to be drunk in the first few years.  Sometime, however, wines hide in the cellar only to provide a pleasant surprise later on.  It was originally claimed to be a blend of Syrah, Petite Syrah, Zinfandel, Sangiovese, Carignan, and Barbera, however, DNA testi

2010 Yann Chave Hermitage, France, Rhone, Wine Review

From a different winemaker named Chave (a name known in the Rhone for 600 years).  This is quite good and really shows off the vintage.  2010 was an excellent year but the wines are tight and need time.  This is just starting to open up and needs a good decant at this point.  Deep ruby/purple in color.  The nose is great with black raspberries, slight bacon fat, violets and grilled meats.  On the palate, this is ripe black raspberry fruit but concentrated.  Medium tannins.  An underlying crushed rock minerality.  Good balance.  Long finish.  Needs heartier foods.  Probably some upside here

2015 Carlisle Syrah Sonoma County, USA, California, Wine Review

This is the basic Syrah from Carlisle.  It sells for around $30 and is a great value.  The bottle comes screw capped which is a good thing.  Purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, black olives, slight grilled meats and pepper.  On the palate, this is young but with some depth.  Drinking easily right now.  Black raspberries.  Good balance.  Plenty of fruit but not flamboyant.  Nice finish.  This often gets drunk early to allow the single vineyard Carlisles to age and that is a bit unfair as this will age just fine too.  

2006 Hedges Family Estate Three Vineyards Red Mountain, Washington, Wine Review

This is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and a little Syrah from three different vineyards in the Red Mountain AVA or Washington state.  At 12 years from vintage it seems to be in a great spot although it should have at least 5 more years before starting to slowly go downhill.  Purple in color.  The nose is nice with cherries, coffee, leather, slight chocolate, cassis and tobacco.  On the palate, this is still fresh with lot of fruit; cherries and black raspberries.  Layers of fruit, damp earth and tobacco.  Nice finish.  This is not a big wine, but not shy either.  Wo

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