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David M. Bueker

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WTN: Santa Cruz Skyline

by David M. Bueker » Sun May 28, 2017 10:26 am

2011 Rhys Syrah Skyline Vineyard - USA, California, San Francisco Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains (5/27/2017)
From the moment I opened the bottle this wine was a winner. Aromas of ripe cherries and blackberries were coming out of the bottle before I even poured a glass. Once in the glass, the fruit was joined by a host of spicy and floral elements. More time brought out darker tar notes, while the fruit maintained focus, kept together by well-buffered tannins.

I was asked whether I could say that this was was as good as or better than a similarly priced Côte Rôtie, but that was not really the point. On some bland, qualitative scale it certainly measured up. I would give this Syrah similar pointless points to a Northern Rhone Syrah if I was in the pointless points business. That pointless point being made, the wine was different from a French Syrah, and that was a good thing. It was an excellent wine in its own right, expressing a more fruit forward, and lower acid profile, that was also incredibly food friendly. Additionally if was friendly to my guests, who were not Northern Rhone wine geeks (but into wine), who appreciated the purity of the Syrah expression.

My assessment: delicious and a notable expression of Syrah that stands on its own, and is well worth the price.
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