2010 DuMol "Eddie's Patch" Russian River Valley Syrah

SKU #1116873 95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 DuMol’s 2010 Syrah Eddie’s Patch Hoppe-Kelly Vineyard is beautifully centered. Savory herbs, licorice, graphite, menthol and blackberries all jump from the glass. Vibrant and totally alive, the 2010 stands out for its focus and sheer verve. Another year or two in bottle should only help the 2010 show even better. Layers of fruit build to the explosive, intense finish. Simply put, this is dazzling juice. Wow! Anticipated maturity: 2015-2025. Winemaker Andy Smith describes 2009 as a “sweet, forward vintage,” while 2011 is more “dynamic and commercial.” Smith reserves his highest praise for 2010, which he calls his favorite among the three current vintages. In 2011, Smith bulked out 20% of his Pinot Noirs, including the entire production of the Eoin. All the 2011 Pinots came in before the rains. Smith used whole clusters only for the Aidan, as botrytis was an issue in all the other Pinot vineyards. The Charles Heintz Chardonnay came in after the rains. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to taste the 2011 Syrahs, as the final blends had not yet been put together at the time of this tasting. In broad terms, the DuMol Chardonnays are all fermented and aged in barrel, with no lees stirring. Some of the wines are aged in slightly larger 300-liter barrels, and at times the malolactic fermentations are partly blocked, which results in wines that are texturally rich but also full of energy, a combination that is rare and hard to achieve.  (4/2013)

94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 (made with a third whole clusters and 43% new oak): Glass-staining purple. Cherry compote, cassis and blueberry on the nose, with hints of olive, violet and vanilla gaining strength with air. Big, mouthfilling and chewy, with surprising finesse and lift to its fleshy black and blue fruit and floral pastille flavors. Velvety and expansive syrah, with supple tannins giving support and shape to the impressively long, smoky-sweet finish.  (6/2013)

92 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *Two Stars* Fully ripe, very outgoing and very much showing the kind of generous fruit and oaky richness that we have come to expect from DuMOL, this year's Syrah from "eddie's patch" is a big, slightly viscous, decidedly concentrated offering that is ever so slightly hushed in specific varietal spice. That said, it earns fine marks for its juicy volume and insistence, and its hard-to-ignore tannins serve as an important reminder that its best lies some years ahead.  (3/2013)

Wine Spectator

 Offers a tight-knit mix of crushed rock, dried berry, floral scents and hints of violets. Complex, if on a modest scale. Ends with a minerally edge. Drink now through 2022. 415 cases made.  (3/2013)

K&L Notes

The 2010 Eddie's Patch Syrah was hand-harvested in mid-October from the Hoppe-Kelly vineyard. The wine was fermented on native yeast before being aged for 17 months in 43% new French oak hogsheads. The winery compares the vintage to their 2005 bottling, and the winemaker writes of the 2010, "Saturated purple color. Initially fresh and bright: cola, raspberry, cherry and mint then darker olive, blackberry, game and dried herbs. Sweet and savory flavors intertwine nicely on palate - blackcurrant, black pepper, sweet tobacco leaf - drier than the nose suggests. Maintains floral inner mouth perfume. Elegantly framed structure, expanding nuanced finish. Cellar for a year and decant off the sediment for an hour before serving. Drink between 2013 and 2024."

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- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Alexander Valley/Russian River

- Among Sonoma County's northernmost appellations, the Alexander Valley AVA acts as a gateway to neighboring Napa to the east and Mendocino to the north. It is a sprawling appellation, with pockets of distinct microclimates and soils, and as such, is home to a variety of wine grapes and styles. Nearly everything grows in the Alexander Valley, though Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay are the most widely planted grapes. The Russian River Valley lies to the south of Alexander Valley, and is marked by much cooler temperatures and frequently heavy fog. The Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grown here are some of the state's finest and most sought-after. Aromatic whites like Gewürztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.