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Blind Syrah and Petites

Mercer Island

Tasted November 26, 2005 by lorenzo with 1,155 views

Introduction

Friends and Family got together to taste through some Syrah and Petites. Every wine was ranked in it's flight and votes were also cast for the top 3 wines of the Night. As with every blind tasting, I was often surprised after the Unveiling. Earthquake and Page Cellars were major suprises. Flight 4 was really a standout!

Flight 1 (3 notes)

Red
2002 Cayuse Syrah Coccinelle Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Walla Walla Valley
90 points
Earthy, mushrooms, Rasberries, cherries on the nose. Ready to go right now. Not overly complex, not overly deep, but nice sweet red fruit and a lingering finish. 90-91 [Rec'd a 1st and a 3rd place vote for Wine of the Night.]
Red
2003 Michael-David Vineyards Petite Sirah Earthquake USA, California, Central Valley, Lodi
92 points
HoneySuckles and Ripe Fruit on the nose. Very big and ripe. Syrupy, but also some complexity. Impressive and I had it guessed as an Aussie Shiraz.[My WineOfFlight, The Groups WOF. Rec'd 2 1st place and 2 2nd place votes for Wine of the Night] Hmmm, this really surprised me. Never would've guessed this would've outperformed those in its flight. Some thought it was a Turley
Red
2002 TOR Syrah Old Clones USA, California, Napa / Sonoma, Carneros
89 points
Floral Nose. Some interesting elements, but Tightly wound. Needs time. Spicy and finishes tannic and bit harsh. [Group average 3rd place in flight.] When the lights came on... I was a little surprised. Thought I'd like this a bit more. Never did get a chance to circle back.

Flight 2 (3 notes)

Red
2002 Robert Biale Petite Sirah Old Crane Ranch USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena
89 points
Hot on the Nose. Slightly Medicinal aromatics. Rasberries and cherries with some leather-ish stuff on the palate. Peppery but too hot on the finish. Will time help?
[My 2nd WOF, Groups 3rd WOF. Rec'd 1 2nd place vote for Wine of the Night.]
Red
2003 Pax Syrah Castelli-Knight Ranch USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
92 points
Floral and Dark Fruits on the Nose. Structured with nice minerals and fruit. Powerful. Like this quite a bit, but seems like it needs time. 91-92+ [My WOF, GroupAvg. 3rd WOF] Major variation with many 1st place and 3rd place votes for WOF.
Red
2000 Columbia Winery Syrah David Lake Signature Series Red Willow Vineyard USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Yakima Valley
85 points
Very Earthy on the nose. Pretty simple, with soft, accessible (but not very deep or complex) fruit. Open for biz, nothing controversial. Not doing much for me and I'm picking up a little metallic note. [GroupAvg 2nd place WOF]

Flight 3 (3 notes)

Red
2000 Araujo Estate Syrah Eisele Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley
92 points
Flowers and Earth on the Nose. Lots of nice dark fruits. Rather complex and has some peppery notes that spice things up. Like this!
[GroupAvg 1st place WOF. 1 1st place, 1 2nd place and 4 3rd place WON votes]
Red
2001 Domaine du Pavillon-Mercurol Crozes-Hermitage France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Crozes-Hermitage
87 points
Raspberries and a little woody on the nose. Didn't find much fruit on the pallette and is a little austere. Old World. [GroupAvg 2nd place WOF. Rec'd 1 1st place vote for WON.]
Red
1999 Turley Petite Syrah Hayne Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena
89 points
Johnny Cash Black. Kicking aromas of Dark Fruit. Big wine, with some stewed dark fruits. While plentiful, the fruit was a little flat and there wasn't much else happening here. Over the hill, or simple Aussie? After this was unveiled, I was surprised and circled back a few times. I have some experience with this wine and believe this to be an off bottle. Didnt find the normal, intense concentration or tannins. ChrisN suggested it was a bit cooked. Others really liked it. [Group Avg 3rd place WOF. But Rec'd 2 1st place and 1 2nd and 3rd place vote for WON.]

Flight 4 (3 notes)

Red
2002 Jeff Cohn Cellars Petite Sirah Frediani Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley
95 points
Inky Dark. Dark fruits, some rocks and faint floral. Also some evidence of heat on the nose. Really like the nose. WOW. This is huge. Round and intensly deep fruit. Very powerful and enjoyable now, but this should age like a storybook love. Powerful Finish. NO spit bucket for YOU! 95-97+
[My Wine of the Night. Group gave it top wine of the flight and it Rec'd 2 1st place votes, 1 2nd place and 2 3rd place votes for Wine of the Night.]
Red
1999 Araujo Estate Syrah Eisele Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley
92 points
Very interesting nose. Some floral, a little pepper, some dark and red fruits. Some earthy elements mingling with the fruit on the palate. Very interesting and enjoyable palate. Very different from the wine that proceeded it. Old World (?) and obviously well crafted. [Group avg 3rd wine of the flight and it Rec'd one 3rd place vote for WON.]
Red
2001 Kongsgaard Syrah Hudson Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley
95 points
Rasberry jam and some floral and pepper on the nose. WOW. What a Flight! This is big and juicy but still stays light on its feet. Lots happening here, great fruit. Still has some tannins and I think this will be stronger in a few years, but what a pleasure now. Neck and Neck for WON with the first wine in this flight. 95+ [My 2nd place WON. Rec'd 2 1st place, 1 2nd place and 3 3rd place votes for WON.]

Flight 5 (3 notes)

Red
2004 Two Hands Shiraz Angels Share Australia, South Australia, Fleurieu, McLaren Vale
91 points
Dark berries on the nose. Major league serving of fruit. Although generous, somewhat soft and round. Not the complexity of the last flight, but still very enjoyable. 90-91 [Group gave 2 1st place, 2 2nd place and 1 3rd place vote for WON]
Red
2003 Turley Petite Syrah Hayne Vineyard USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena
93 points
Another Inky Dark Monster. Huge Nose. Major Dark fruit and some Anise. Defintiely extracted and deep, but still seems well balanced. Enjoyable, Obviously Young. Well crafted. 93+ [Group gave it 2 2nd place and 1 3rd place vote for WON.]
Red
2002 Page Cellars Syrah USA, Washington, Columbia Valley
92 points
Really pretty nose. Cherries, Honey, Flowers. A little earthy and woody. Drinking beautifully now. Soft and elegant, very approachable, but still providing much in the way of concentrated fruits. Well done. [Group gave it 4 1st place, 2 2nd place and a 3rd place vote for WON.] When this was unveiled, I was very surpirsed. Blind tasting greatness! I've only had a few wines from Page Cellars, and while pretty good, don't remember any raising quite like this. Shouldn't be too surprised it did well tonight. Drinking perfectly right now and it was the last wine of the night.
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