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K&L Staff Recommendations
92 points Wine Enthusiast: "The first winery to plant Syrah in the county continues to produce powerful but layered expressions. This delivers rich aromas of cherry, stewed plum and blackberry alongside sage and a wisp of vanilla. On the palate, it starts rich, until bright acidity and tannins bring balance amidst mocha and blackberry jam flavors and an oak-powered vanilla finish." (2/2015)
Arguably the most popular of the co-branded wines with our staff last year was the 2010 version of this wine so it had a lot to live up to this year. The good news is the staff is every bit as excited about it this year and we hope that enthusiasm will rub off on you. Bob Lindquist was more than happy to work with us again this year and put together this 100% Syrah bottling from certified Demeter biodynamically grown vines in the cool Edna Valley Appellation. Unmistakably Syrah from the first sniff of the nose the bold cracked black pepper, fried bacon, ... Read More »
Praise for the last vintage of this wine from Antonio Galloni: "A rich, boisterous wine, the 2013 Syrah Tous Les Jours is all about fruit and texture. Dark red cherry, plum, black pepper and spice notes are all pushed forward in a Syrah that captures the generous personality of the wines of Santa Ynez. The style is bold and intense, with considerable up-front fruit and terrific overall balance. Once again, the Tous Les Jours delivers superb quality and value." (06/2015)
93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Another blockbuster is the 2013 Syrah Verna's, which comes from a vineyard located north of the Sta. Rita Hills, near Los Alamos. It was 70% destemmed and aged 10 months in neutral oak. It reveals terrific notes of cassis, peppered meats, blackberries, licorice and wood smoke to go with a full-bodied, ripe, yet beautifully balanced and layered feel on the palate. Given all the Syrahs and Pinot Noirs from Santa Barbara going for three times the price, the quality here is remarkable. In short, it's a no-brainer that will drink nicely for at least another 4 ...Read More »
91 points Wine & Spirits: "Bob Lindquist blends fruit from cool climates like the Santa Maria and Edna valleys with warmer-climate fruit from Paso Robles for this bottling. The 2012 is pretty great, especially considering the price, offering the full range of syrah fruit, from smoky depths to clean blue fruit to lifted floral and peppercorn aromas. It’s lively and gripping, for smoked pork." (10/2014)90 points Antonio Galloni: "Inky purple. Highly perfumed aromas of dark fruit liqueur, potpourri and incense, with a peppery spice quality emerging with air. Juicy blackberry and blueberry flavors are complicate ...Read More »
90 points Antonio Galloni: "Bright purple. Smoke-accented black and blue fruit aromas are complemented by suggestions of peppery spices and violet: textbook Syrah. Supple and expansive on the palate, offering pliant blueberry and cherry-cola flavors given spine by tangy acidity. Closes sweet and long, with resonating spiciness and harmonious tannins. A joint project of Master Sommelier Sarah Floyd and the Pisoni family, Luli was originally targeted at restaurants for by-the-glass programs. The wines are made by Gary Pisoni's son Jeff at the family's winery in Santa Rosa and the lin ...Read More »
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Cellar Selection* This bottling is the winery’s most expensive wine, and usually its best. Production of the ’08 was unusually low, resulting in amazing concentration. It’s basically a detonation of cherries, raspberries, currants, cola and mocha. New oak is present, in the form of delicate toast and wood spice, but is balanced. So silky and delicious now, you can drink it, but the tannic balance suggests the cellar. Will evolve over the next 12 years, maybe longer." (10/2013)93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A gorgeous bottle of wine, the 2008 Syrah Bien Nacido X Block 30th Anniversary ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
94-97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2012 Syrah Relentless, which has not yet been bottled, is a blend of 89% Syrah and 11% Petite Sirah. In keeping with this amazing year, it’s full-bodied, juicy, succulent, flamboyant, with blueberry and blackberry fruit galore, lots of glycerin and a massive mouthfeel, but no heaviness or astringency characterize this stunning wine. This should turn out to be a great, great Rhône Ranger when released in a year or so." (10/2014)95 points James Suckling: "This is very fresh and balanced with a dense and silky texture plus lots of violet, berry and hints of sandalwood. It’s full a ...Read More »
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "Coming from one of Ballard Canyon’s premiere vineyards, this offers aromas of black cherry, wet black loam and morning dew on sage. The mouthfeel is all silk, and flavors are savory, with elderberries, crushed sage and wild mint." (2/2015)92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "(made with 50% whole clusters and raised in concrete tanks): Opaque ruby. Deeply pitched black and blue fruit aromas are lifted and sharpened by cracked pepper and fresh flowers. Spicy and penetrating on the palate, with juicy blackcurrant and boysenberry flavors framed and lifted by tangy acidity. This suave, powerful, ...Read More »
Connoisseurs Guide: "*One Star* Rich and well-ripened but not going too far and no more than hinting at a bit of chocolate here and there, this generous wine keys in on ample, berry-like fruit and shows a quiet hand with regard to varietal spice. It is fleshy, full and firm, and its fruit stays the course despite toughening tannins at the end. Refinement and beauty likely lie out of its reach regardless of how long it is held, but four or five years of patience should bring it at least a little of each." (11/2014) Wine Spectator: "Racy, if rather dry and tannic, with accents of dried cherry, c ...Read More »
94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2013 Syrah Purisima Mountain Vineyard boasts tremendous tension and explosive energy. Underlying veins of tannin and acidity, along with a drop of Viognier, give the 2013 much of its freshness. A rush of dark plums, black cherries, mocha, violets, cloves and licorice add nuance on the huge finish. This is a fabulous wine from Steve Beckmen. Steve Beckmen excels with deep, powerful wines. Beckmen's estate vineyards are in Los Olivos and on Purisima Mountain in Ballard Canyon. I was impressed with what I tasted this year. In particular, the 2013 Syrah ...Read More »
Pinot may be the big star of Santa Barbara, especially since the movie Sideways, after which the Hitching Post and its wines have been very popular indeed. But Syrah...needs care and attention too, you know? And it can only grow--really well, anyway--in these really specific, tucked away corners of the world--like Santa Barbara County. And only the most patient and nurturing of vintners can make great wine out of it. Only somebody who really takes the time to understand Syrah's potential...can coax it into its fullest expression.
The 2012 Holus Bolus Syrah is sourced entirely from a 5 acre Syrah planting at the edge of the Sta. Rita Hills appellation. The vines are planted at a high density of 3,000 vines per acre on a windy hilltop. The coolish, sunny and windy weather at this site give the wine lovely spice and fresh acidity. Grapes are fermented with 25% whole clusters. Aged for 15 months in two and three-year-old 350 liter barrels. 750 cases produced. Here are Robert Parker’s, The Wine Advocate, thoughts about the 2012 Holus Bolus Syrah, giving it a score of 91 points, "a se... Read More »
96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A wine that stood out in my Paso Robles tasting was the 2013 Syrah Nuts and Bolts. Made from 100% Syrah that saw 16 months in 70% new French oak, it's the greatest vintage of this cuvee I've tasted and it offers off the hook notes of creme de cassis, melted licorice, caramelized meats, pepper and crushed flowers. Full-bodied, voluptuous and hedonistic, it's also seamless and balanced, with ultra-fine tannin, no hard edges and blockbuster length. As winemaker Russell From says, "It is a no holds barred expression of Syrah that chases flavor at nearly any ...Read More »
Mick Unti says this about his delicious red: "This 2012 Syrah really illustrates the best attributes of this excellent vintage. It is very dark, with intense blue and blackberry fruit, licorice and spice. It might be the most full-bodied normale Syrah we’ve made in years. If you drink this wine now, you might consider decanting it. I’m counting on this Syrah to age nicely over the next 4 to 7 years."
92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright purple. Youthfully wound-up aromas of blackberry, mulberry and violet, plus a strong note of licorice. Deeply pitched dark fruit flavors are given an exotic character by notes of violet pastille and star anise. Supple and expansive on the firm, gripping, intensely spicy finish. This textbook syrah should age well. (ST)" (5/2011) Antonio Galloni: "The 2009 Syrah Estate Vineyard shows the wilder side of the grape in its red cherries, black pepper, spices and herbs. Medium in body, it possesses good balance and energy through to the finish. (AG)" (8/2011) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2009 Syrah E ...Read More »
According to the winery: "From a black grape that makes red wine, the 6th Sense remains a huge player in the Michael David lineup. Super-saturated, big and juicy, it makes a bright, tangy impact. Full of flavor in the same deep-red tones as the aromas, tannins are tame. The mid-palate offers plum and blackberry, with a touch of mulberry."
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "Distinctive and unique aromas of blueberry, sawdust pencil shavings, freshly tanned leather and fennel seed swirl amidst a mysterious minty element. It’s silky and lush once sipped, with fine-grained tannins and all shades of purple fruit and flower flavors." (12/2014)93 points Antonio Galloni: "Explosive and perfumed to the core, the 2012 Syrah Originals captivates all the sense with exuberant perfume and super-intense fruit, all with plenty of underlying structure. Cloves, lavender, mint and an array of spices inform the fragrant, highly expressive finish. The 60% whole clusters a ...Read More »
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "This is likely the last vintage from this vineyard, which the family winery seemingly mastered in this bottling. There’s an underlying umami-driven smoked meat backbone to the nose that also shows bold cherry blossom, olallieberry, pepper, dried herbs and blackberry-soy sauce. The palate is complex yet doesn’t overpower, with bits of purple flowers, blueberry, black pepper and menthol." (12/2015)93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Another blockbuster is the 2013 Syrah Verna's, which comes from a vineyard located north of the Sta. Rita Hills, near Los Alamos. It was 70% destemmed and aged 10 ...Read More »
"I’m especially excited about Para Maria because it gives us another affordable red wine alongside La Cuadrilla," says Peter Stolpman. "100% estate Syrah, we chose the juiciest, most approachable, and easy-to-love lots for Para Maria. Sashi Moorman, as always, had a new experiment that would potentially optimize an early-release Syrah. He fermented a small portion of the wine carbonically to ensure a pure fruit profile and freshness."
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "... the 2013 Syrah Hocus Pocus offers a funky, earthy bouquet of chocolate-laced dark fruits, old leather and damp earth to go with a beautifully textured, rich and fruit-forward style on the palate. As with the 2012, it’s a prime candidate for drinking over the coming couple of years. (JD)" (8/2014) K&L Notes: From the Winery: "The wine that started it all! The Black Sheep Finds wine project started in 2005 with the very first vintage of Hocus Pocus Syrah. 2013 is the ninth vintage of Hocus Pocus Syrah. I know I said this last year, but this is my favorite vintage y... Read More »
91 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2012 Syrah bursts from the glass with dark red cherry, plum, smoke, lavender and sweet spices. Ample and juicy on the palate, the 2012 is an excellent choice for drinking over the next few years. The style is soft and fruit-forward, with no hard edges and terrific overall balance. (AG)" (7/2014)90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Tasted from bottle, the 2012 Syrah Santa Barbara County is a year-in and year-out outstanding wine, as well as a smoking value. Loaded with notions of plum, blackberry, licorice, violets, and hints of olive, this medium to full-bodied, delicious, forward Syrah ...Read More »
90 points Wine Spectator: "An intensely grapey and extracted red, featuring pure, chunky blackberry, wild berry, black licorice, smoke, graphite and cedary oak notes. Ends with a dense, chewy aftertaste. Best from 2016 through 2028." (3/2015) K&L Notes: Each vintage of Eric Kent wines, and each individual release, bears a label with unique artwork commissioned by the winery. Another work of art: Eric Kent manages to maintain wine buyers' intense interest in their concentrated, flavorful Syrahs.
Inventory: Redwood City
Edmunds St. John is a Rhône blend specialist making wine in Berkeley, California since 1985. The Fenaughty Vineyard, located at 2,800 feet on the south side of the American River where the soils are volcanic clay-loam, produces a smokey, gamy wine that just might be a dead-ringer for young Crozes-Hermitage. Winemaker's tasting note: "Quite dark purply-red. Deep nose showing violet notes, and smoke, a bit of blackberry-leaf. Medium-to-full body on the palate, with engaging texture, and good freshness. Flavors nicely balanced, and lengthy, but only showing... Read More »
Jeff Runquist helped to introduce Syrah to the program at J. Lohr Winery when he worked there in the early 1990s. "At the time we were unfamiliar with Syrah, and so we spent quite some time exploring the various styles and flavors this grape produced," according to Runquist. Despite appreciating the "terroir-driven character" of Old World Syrah, with its earthy, flinty, and dusty aromas and flavors, he was smitten with deeply flavored old vine Syrah from McClaren Vale and the Barrosa Valley of South Australia, which he attempts to emulate with his Paso R... Read More »
93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2012 Syrah So Serine smells as if it were co-fermented with Viognier given its uplifted nose of apricot marmalade, crème de cassis, blackberry and spring flowers. A gorgeous, sexy, full-bodied, voluptuously-textured wine with 15.2% alcohol, in many ways it is a lighter cuvée for Jeff Cohn. While it is hard to resist at present, this delicious Syrah should last for 8-10 years. Jeff Cohn makes a dizzying array of wines, all of which have enormous appeal and character. (RP)" (12/2014) Wine Spectator: "A ripe, generous style, with up-front flavors of fleshy plum and black ...Read More »
91 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2013 Syrah Tensley Vineyard, from Joey Tensley's home vineyard in Los Olivos, is one of the more open wines in the range. Round, supple and polished, the 2013 offers terrific depth and richness, with plenty of dark red and black fruit, smoke and savory herbs all pushed forward. As good as the 2013 is, though, it is a bit light by Tensley standards. (AG)" (8/2015)91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A killer value in Syrah, Tensley's 2013 Syrah Santa Barbara is basically a blend of all the single-vineyard Syrahs. While you'd think this is would be a second wine, the reality is that they o ...Read More »
92 points Antonio Galloni: "Glass-staining ruby. Cherry-cola, blueberry, Indian spices and violet on the highly perfumed nose. Sappy and seamless on the palate, offering juicy black and blue fruit flavors and sexy floral pastille and spicecake flourishes. Shows very good energy on the clinging, spice-driven finish, which shows sneaky tannins. In John Alban's opinion his 2011s will be long agers based on the fact that "the cool season preserved acidity and gave small berries, with great skin-to-juice ratios and excellent phenols." The lusher '12s, while starting to show plenty of up ...Read More »
91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "More forward than the 2011, the 2012 Syrah Alturas has beautiful, gamey dark berry and raspberry-like fruits, olive, peppercorn and hints of road tar to go with a medium to full-bodied, supple and superbly textured feel on the palate. Possesses good concentration, a soft, easy going mid-palate and nicely integrated acidity, this is already drinking nicely, but will evolve gracefully over the coming 6-8 years. These northern California beauties are made by Paul Gordon and Scott Shapley, with a focus on their estate Halcon Vineyard located in the Mendocin ...Read More »
91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Adam's entry-level Syrah is the 2013 Syrah Santa Barbara County and it's a year in, year out sensational value. It's ruby/purple color is followed by textbook black and blue fruits, violets, salty minerality and cracked pepper-like aromatics. Medium to full-bodied, ripe, textured and seamless, with nicely integrated acidity and a full mid-palate ... (JD)" (8/2015) Antonio Galloni: "Savory herbs leather, tobacco, smoke and cedar are all found in Ojai's Syrah 2013 Santa Barbara. Powerful and intense, especially for an appellation-level bottling, the 2013 shows the more savory ...Read More »
90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Opaque ruby. Black and blue fruits on the nose, complicated by notes of black cardamom and candied violet. Spicy and precise on entry, then fleshier in the mid-palate, offering sweet blackberry and boysenberry flavors lifted by zesty acidity. The smoky, sweet, clinging finish leaves a note of cracked pepper behind." (5/2012)90 points Wine Enthusiast: "This is a notable wine for its smooth, supple tannins and its intense flavors of black cherry jam, mocha, bacon, black pepper and sandalwood. It’s a full-bodied selection for drinking soon, and be sure to pair it with almost anything i ...Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
2007 Saxum "Booker Vineyard" Paso Robles Proprietary Red
Bid on this 6-bottle lot of 2007 Saxum "Booker Vineyard" Paso Robles Proprietary Red (99RP, 95ST, 94WS). Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The inky/purple-hued 2007 Booker Vineyard (95% Syrah and 5% Grenache) boasts a floral-dominated bouquet with camphor, blackberry, roasted meat, and espresso scents in the background. The density, flavor intensity, richness, full-bodied power, elegance, and freshness are all hallmarks of this special vintage in the Central Coast. This wine should drink well for 10-12+ years. (RP)" (08/2009)
This lot contains the following items:
2007 Saxum "Booker Vineyard" Paso Robles Proprietary Red (qty: 6)
Auction Start Date: Nov 24 2015 4:30PM PT
93-95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A great Syrah, the 2013 Syrah Hudson Vineyard from Carneros includes 50% whole clusters and was cofermented with 3% Viognier. Tasting like a California version of a Côte Rôtie, it offers up notes of bacon fat, lard, meaty cassis and black raspberries, and a floral undercurrent. This fabulous, full-bodied, opulent, juicy, succulent, sexy Syrah should age effortlessly for a decade or more." (12/2014) 91-94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2013 Syrah Hudson Vineyard presents quite a contrast to the Griffin's Lair. Here the style is much more intense and overtly fruit-driven. Black fruit, smoke ...Read More »
Herman Story proprietor/winemaker Russel P. From specializes in small lot productions of Rhone-style wines and though he has earned high praise from critics for his wines over the years, he sure hasn't let ego get in the way of making distinctive wines that reflect a clear sense of place and his unique sense of humor. This one's got 2% Viognier in the mix, and was aged in 65% new French oak for a full two years. The winemaker's notes: "You know those pictures of dragons sitting on piles of gold coins and skeletons, a whisp of smoke coming from their nose... Read More »
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Another cool-climate style effort, the 2012 Syrah Bien Nacido Vineyard has lots of smoke, pepper meats, blackberry and marine-like minerality on the nose. Medium+-bodied, tight, concentrated and balanced, with moderate tannin, drink this classy 2012 over the coming 7-8 years. It was fermented with 45% whole clusters and spent 19 months in French oak." (8/2015)
91 points Wine & Spirits: "Bob Lindquist blends fruit from cool climates like the Santa Maria and Edna valleys with warmer-climate fruit from Paso Robles for this bottling. The 2012 is pretty great, especially considering the price, offering the full range of Syrah fruit, from smoky depths to clean blue fruit to lifted floral and peppercorn aromas. It’s lively and gripping, for smoked pork." (10/2014)90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Inky purple. Highly perfumed aromas of dark fruit liqueur, potpourri and incense, with a peppery spice quality emerging with air. Juicy blackberry and blueberry flavors are complicate ...Read More »
"DuMOL fashions three noteworthy Syrahs which probably receive less attention than they should because of the winery’s high visibility and credibility for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir," according to Robert Parker, who scored the 2012 vintage 94 points in December, 2014. DuMol wines, made by winemaker Andy Smith, are consistently a hit with Wine Spectator and Antonio Galloni, as well.
94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Opaque purple. Sexy, highly aromatic nose offers an array of dark berry and floral qualities, along with incense, Asian spices and dried violet. Rich and creamy, with vibrant blackberry and cassis flavors, velvety texture and bright minerality. Manages to be both rich and energetic, with outstanding finishing lift and persistence. This was fermented with 75% whole clusters." (6/2008)93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The brilliant 2006 Syrah Walker Vine Hill Vineyard reveals sweet notes of white chocolate, creme de cassis, spring flowers, and hints of pepper as well as damp earth. Full-bod ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
A perennial value-based favorite, Ravenswood's Vintners Blend Shiraz packs big punches full of mulberry, dark chocolate and roasted meats. Made by one of California's iconic producers.
94 points Wine & Spirits: "Bob Lindquist has been making Hillside Estate since 1994, using fruit from Bien Nacido Vineyard’s Z Block, a sloping, southwest-facing planting on the cool, gravelly Santa Maria bench. It was planted to Lindquist’s specifications in 1992. This iteration feels lean and leafy at first, then it blooms in a graceful, silken thread of complexity, suggesting all sorts of appetizing nuances—cured pork, green peppercorn, charcoal, rose hips, blueberry skin, allspice, mint. In the end, it lands on a cool mineral note that lasts. It’s saturated with flavor but not ...Read More »
92 points from Robert Parker: "The 2005 Syrah Rattlesnake Rock offers up aromas of charcoal, creme de cassis, pepper, and white chocolate. More elegant and restrained than the exuberant, flamboyant 2004, it is reminiscent of a top French Hermitage. Medium to full-bodied with moderately high tannin as well as a richness that builds incrementally in the mouth, this fresh, lively, impressive Syrah should age well for 12-15 years. Impressive Syrahs are being fashioned by proprietor Bradley Brown from his Santa Cruz Mountain vineyards. Unfortunately, quantit... Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The intense, inky/ruby/purple-tinged 2005 Syrah Reva Vineyard boasts gorgeous notes of graphite, smoke, roasted meat, herbs, and oodles of blackberries and creme de cassis. This full-bodied, fabulously rich Syrah is a superb success for the vintage." (8/2007)94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Glass-staining purple. Explosively perfumed bouquet of spicy red and dark berries, olive, tobacco, iodine and charred meat; I could smell this for hours. Spicy blackberry, cassis and bitter cherries are complicated by violet pastille and suave vanilla and cinnamon. Gains weight but retains clarity on ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
93 points Antonio Galloni: "Dark red cherry, plum, smoke and spice notes flesh out in the 2012 Syrah John Sebastiano Vineyard. A rich, ample wine, the 2012 dazzles with its depth and soft contours, although there is plenty of underlying weight and structure. The 2012 was made with fully destemmed fruit, so the fruit remains front and center. This fleshy, super-expressive Syrah will drink beautifully pretty much right out of the gate. Tasted next to the No SO2 bottling, the straight John Sebastiano Syrah is a bit less exuberant, but it, too, is very beautiful. This wind-swept site i ...Read More »
According to the winery: "The 2013 Hommage Allan is the Hermitage to the 2012 Côte-Rôtie. This was fermented, destemmed and in an open top tank using mostly pump overs. The 2013 Allan was pressed just before it went dry and completed its fermentation in barrel with its original wild yeast and wild malolactic bacteria. The vast majority of the new wood was Francois Frères (all 3 year, air dried), and there were only two Meyrieux barrels. Like all our wines, this went to bottle unfined and unfiltered. We are very impressed with this vineyard site. Our Syra... Read More »