Reserve: 2013 Syrah (Les Cotes de L’ouest) by Terre Rouge

Tonight’s occasion: 2013 Syrah (Les Cotes de L’ouest) by Terre Rouge, Plymouth, California.

Dark rich intense color. Nose is restrained with gentle notes of plum, dark berries and hint of sweet cherry. Terroir is tastefully expressed through subtle wet sandy leather. Once opened up, a hint of mushrooms emerges when swirled.

Body is balanced from front to back, attack to finish. Mild acidity opens up the palate which is quickly filled in with plums, dark cherries and the faintest hint of dried apricot all wrapped in massive, heavy tannin. A seamless transition to finish characterized by an ever tightening tannic grip resulting in parched lips sealed shut with a spicy tingle.

Terre Rouge is our 2019 Winemaker Of The Year. This is their flagship wine, intended to introduce the wider consumer audience to their exquisite small batch wines. It is a head scratcher of a wine because it stands head and shoulders above most reserve Syrah I’ve had. It presents an incredible value at a mind boggling price point. It embodies what a classic California Syrah is all about. I keep a case on hand as a baseline comparison whenever reviewing a Syrah and I can say many Syrah have fallen to this humble wine. Well done Bill, Jane and the entire Terre Rouge Easton Team! 🍷😁👌🏽

Thanks to wine.com and their extensive library, you can now access most of the wines I review on here. You can use the link below to have Terre Rouge wines delivered to your doorstep.

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Reserve: 2014 Estate GSP by Loxton

Tonight’s occasion: 2014 Estate GSP (Grenache, Syrah, Petite Syrah) by Loxton, Sonoma County, California.

Dark rich color. Thick, warm, full nose, full of caramel, sweet cherry and plum and hint of slightly mineral terroir. Body has good structure and even greater balance. Not as fruit forward as the nose would suggest. Terroir is carried through into the body. A little berry, and plum. A very full, weighted mouthfeel from start to finish. Slightly creamy tannins take over the transition to a slightly tart plum finish. A slightly dry tannin lingers on the palate. Moments later a hint spice warms deep further down inside the chest. This is an interesting trick I haven’t seen before. Usually spice is expressed in the body or finish. This one seems to have a delayed effect.

This is a well built wine. I think it is showing really well right now and should be enjoyed over the next 3-5yrs. The benifits of the blending process really show here. I will surely be adding newer vintages to my cellar and following them.

I highly recommend visiting this Aussie for an authentic taste of what Sonoma has to offer. -Nicely done Mr Loxton! 🍷😁👌🏽

Reserve: 2008 Syrah by Terre Rouge

Tonight’s occasion: 2008 Syrah (Sentinel Oak Vineyards) by Terre Rouge.

Deep inky color. Rich nose with lots of plum, blackberry and a hint of caramel on the back. Big, beautiful and bold structured body with great balance. That plum and blackberry carries through into the body accompanied by a little acidity. Massive finish dominates the palate as those big tannins roar to life and demand your attention. This is a fantastic wine. A well built wine that punches above it’s weight. The winemakers’s tireless attention to detail, commitment to excellence without compromise and decades of practice in the art and science of wine making really shows here.

This wine is just now becoming approachable in my opinion and has easily another decade of expression ahead of it. At 11+ years old, it is nowhere near its peak expression.

Well done Terre Rouge * Easton! 😁🍷🍷🍷

Thanks to wine.com and their extensive library, you can now access most of the wines I review on here. You can use the link below to have Terre Rouge wines delivered to your doorstep.

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Reserve: 1999 Syrah by Terre Rouge

Tonight’s occasion: 1999 Syrah by Terre Rouge of Shenandoah Valley, California.

It has an elusive nose with a hint of oaky chocolate, maybe a little plum.

Once opened it almost vanishes. Body has a mature late stage balance with a hint of acidity that gently and patiently segues into the finish which is introduced by a very brief bite of spice before riding into the sunset with a final gentle wave of mild tannic grip. This wine is ripe and has been ripe for a while.

After 20 years of patiently waiting, it came right out of the bottle ready with the posture of an old sage. It needs no decanting. It is absolutely beautiful. I cannot say enough about a winemaker whose craft shows so well after so long. A bottle like this is a distinct honor, privilege and true occasion. Where were you in 1999? Now imagine where this winemaker was at the same time.

Thanks to wine.com and their extensive library, you can now access most of the wines I review on here. You can use the link below to have Terre Rouge wines delivered to your doorstep.

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Reserve: 2014 Syrah by Dierberg

Tonight’s occasion is a 2014 Syrah by Dierberg Star Lane Vinyard.

I posted a while back about my visit last year here. I wanted to try something special tonight so I reached for the Santa Barbara region in my cellar. Any mildly savvy palate should be able to identify the terrior in the nose alone. Very nice and rich. It prompted visuals of the vigneron (the one who tends to the vines) and contemplated all he/she put into those vines for the terrior to be so pronounced in the nose alone. A great, buttery, well balanced body (especially for a 14.2% ABV wine) a testament to the winemaker’s skill and craft. The finish is not as massive as your average California Syrah, but still has that signature tannic grip albeit restrained for a Syrah.

This region is most known for it’s amazing Pinot Noir, so it’s always a treat to see what Syrah – a typically big bold wine – would taste like. I like what they’ve done with this Syrah. Great job!

Thanks to wine.com and their extensive library, you can now access most of the wines I review on here. You can use the link below to have Dierberg Star Lane wines delivered to your doorstep.

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Reserve: 2007 Syrah by Rusack

Tonight’s occasion is a 2007 Syrah by Rusack from Santa Barbara County.

I posted a while back about my visit here. You know whenever I feel like tasting something truly special, this region never fails and Rusack is a must. This region is most known for its rich exquisite Pinot Noir, which is precisely why I picked up their Syrah. This 12 year old vintage is drinking perfect right now. Full of gentle subtle aromas, a wide body devoid of any overbearing character and a finish that’ll make you do a double-take as it starts fading and then quickly gets overwhelmed with a long gentle, enduring tannic grip. This is my kind of wine! Great work Rusack!

This wine is a great candidate for your term reserve. You can pick up their current vintages and lay them down for another 5 years or more. I have some 2014 I picked up on this trip as well and I very much look forward to opening them 7 years from now. The good news is they have an extensive list of well priced library wines you can pick from. These will give you an idea of how they will age.

Thanks to wine.com and their extensive library, you can now access most of the wines I review on here. You can use the link below to have Rusack wines delivered to your doorstep.

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