This is the cult cab of Napa Syrahs. The body and structure is tight, yet solid fruit. Taut tannins that don’t overpower, but are strong and dependable.
The nose is earthy, but not in the ‘forest’ or ‘herbacous’ way. It is a combination of freshly dug dirt and a woody, smokey, tabacco scent. Sitting right behind that is a dark fruit nose, but that hasn’t been able to fight thru in the first 15 minutes of opening. We’ll see how it progresses in a few hours.
It has more of cab/merlot color to it, rather than the deep, purply hue that most syrahs of this caliber have. I honestly would be hard pressed to guess this as a syrah if I didn’t know better, given its tannic structure and reserved yet strong fruit.
It has a very lean yet juicy feel to it. Rather astringent early on. This is not a juicy fruit bomb or a tight peppery syrah, like so many others. I suppose the fact that this is from a mountain vineyard and not the hot valley floor has alot to do with it. It’s a very beautiful wine. This will go perfect with the Ribeye that I’m about to grill in a bit…
If I had to choose which fruits to describe, I definately think that they are tart red fruits, such as cherries and boisenberry. It is very floral too…not in an overpowering way, but like walking thru a park on a cool summer day.
OK – so it’s about 2 hours and 1 glass later. The black fruits have arrived. Before I get there though, let me point out that this wine is 14.9%…but ironically it doesn’t taste like it. It doesn’t bite back, or have that nasally alcohol burn. Caught me off guard, but I felt this wine sooner than I would expect, and had to put the glass down and step away. I suppose I could start spitting after I taste. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Never.
Anyhow, now that it’s opened up some, there is some of the Napa terrior that has started to shine through. Beautiful nose. The fruits are coming thru more as well, but are still tart. Blackberry and strawberries have begun to dominate, and the cherry flavors have subsided. Very interesting how tight this was to start, and b/c of that, it came across as a big Cab instead of a Syrah. Its definately not a hot, peppery, fruit bomb…which I also like with great passion, but it IS a very well structured and reserved Syrah. The uniqueness is refreshing, as is the winemakers ability to make this varietal into something special.
I like wine.