Syrah: Articles on the Syrah Red Wine Grape Varietal

Hawke's Bay: New Zealand's Oldest Wine Region

Hawke's Bay, the oldest wine region in New Zealand, is known for its top-quality red wines and chardonnays.  In fact, 30 percent of all chardonnay grapes grown in New Zealand are planted in the Hawke's Bay wine region.

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2006 Andrew Murray M Stolpman Vineyard Syrah - IntoWineTV Episode 91

"Wines from the movie Sideways." Host Lisa Kolenda and wine experts Loren Sonkin, Bartholomew Broadbent, and Edward Ruiz taste and discuss the 2006 Andrew Murray M Stolpman Vineyard Syrah from California's Santa Ynez Valley.

California Central Coast Syrah Vintage Chart

Central Coast Syrah    
2010 88 D/H
2009 91 D/H
2008

Rhone Valley & Spanish Rhone-style Wines Tasted at the 2008 Hospice du Rhone Events

The Rhone Report: About Rhone and Rhone-Style Wines and Winemakers is part of an ongoing series.

Last month we reported on American Rhone-style wines we tasted at the 16th annual Hospice du Rhone events in Paso Robles, California from May 1 to 3, 2008.  We noted that this event was an opportunity to consider Rhone-style wines from a fresh perspective because, unlike most tasting opportunities, these events included Rhone-style wines from the Rhone Valley itself (51 wineries), elsewhere in France (4 wineries) as well as from Spain (4 wineries), Australia (17 wineries), South Africa (6 wineries), Chile (2 wineries), Argentina (1 winery) and the United States.  While this was a California-dominated event, and while many of the Rhone Valley’s best producers weren’t represented, there was still sufficient European and other entries to make for interesting comparisons and contrasts.

2008 Hospice du Rhone Events: Highs & Lows of American Rhone-style Wines Tasted

The Rhone Report: About Rhone and Rhone-Style Wines and Winemakers is part of an ongoing series.

The 16th annual Hospice du Rhone events in Paso Robles, California from May 1 to 3, 2008 was an opportunity to consider Rhone-style wines from a fresh perspective.  Unlike most tasting opportunities, these events included Rhone-style wines from the Rhone Valley itself (51 wineries), elsewhere in France (4 wineries) as well as from Spain (4 wineries), Australia (17 wineries), South Africa (6 wineries), Chile (2 wineries), Argentina (1 winery) and the United States.  The American wines were mostly from California (144 wineries), but a few examples from Arizona (2 wineries) and Washington State (5 wineries) were also included.  While this is a California-dominated event, and while many of the Rhone Valley’s best producers aren’t represented, there is still sufficient European and other entries to make for interesting comparisons and contrasts.  The events included two general tastings and a series of focused seminars.

Merlot vs Syrah: Which Varietal Blooms Brightest in Washington?

Say “Oregon” and Pinot Noir comes to mind. Argentina? Malbec. And who can say “Shiraz” without thinking of Australia? But what grape will Washington wine country claim as it’s own as it expands in production and popularity? There are so many red treasures in this state, sometimes it is hard to say. But after my luscious Saturday tasting, I’m thinking Syrah and Merlot may duke it out for the prize.

America’s Best Rhone Style Red Wines: 11th Annual Rhone Rangers Tasting Reviewed

The Rhone Report: About Rhone and Rhone-Style Wines and Winemakers is part of an ongoing series.

Last month we discussed the white Rhone style wines offered at the 2008 Rhone Rangers tasting event at Fort Mason in San Francisco on March 18. This month we turn to the reds, of which we tasted 50. Among those we tasted were some old favorites and some wineries or bottlings with which we were not yet familiar. We don’t pretend that we tasted a representative group of wines, because our sample was skewed to wines we have loved in the past and others about which we have heard positive comments.

Heidi Peterson Barrett: Napa's Wine Diva on Winemaking, La Sirena, and the Legacy of Screaming Eagle

Heidi Peterson Barrett As arguably the most celebrated, respected, envied, and in-demand winemaker in America today, Heidi Peterson Barrett is one of only a handful of winemakers who can legitimately lay claim to "superstar" status. Her wines at both Dalle Valle and Screaming Eagle resulted in multiple 100 point scores from Robert Parker (Parker himself dubbed her the "First Lady of Wine") and helped redefine both the meaning and value of "cult" wines. She rocked the wine world at the 2000 Napa Valley Wine Auction as a 6-liter bottle of her 1992 Screaming Eagle sold for $500,000, in the process setting a world record for the highest price ever paid for a single bottle of wine (a vertical offering went for $650,000 at the 2001 Napa Valley Wine Auction).

Heidi Peterson Barrett is currently winemaker for Amuse Bouche, Paradigm, Revana, Barbour, Lamborn, Fantesca, as well as her own label La Sirena. I recently had the pleasure of catching up with Heidi to talk about winemaking, her own La Sirena label, and the legacy of Screaming Eagle.

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2004 La Sirena Syrah - IntoWineTV Episode 31

Do Northern Rhone Syrahs Have to Break the Bank?

The Rhone Report: About Rhone and Rhone-Style Wines and Winemakers is part of an ongoing series.

The classic red wines of the Northern Rhone Valley are some of the world’s greatest. Hermitage, Côte Rôtie and Cornas reds are the finest expressions of Syrah on earth.

But the best of them have gotten to be very expensive, especially in American dollars. Recent vintages of Hermitage from Jean-Louis Chave are now more than $200 per bottle (and his scarce, top cuvee, Cathelin, is over $1,000). Guigal’s Côte Rôtie La Landonne, La Mouline and La Turque are nearly $250 per bottle, and even the Guigal Côte Rôtie Brune et Blond bottling is over $75.

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