2010 Terre Rouge "Les Côtes de l'Ouest" Syrah
Winemaker Bill Easton remains one our favorite Sierra Foothill producers of serious Syrah, and this very solid, modestly priced effort delivers a great deal of bang for the buck. It is both ripe and quite lively with lots of youthfully exuberant berry-like fruit, and its savory accents of dark soils and peppery spice go right to the varietal point. It is milder in tannin than many of its bigger-boned cousins, but it is balanced to firmness and clearly could do with a few years in the cellar.
Fragrant in game, lavender, herb and red berry fruit, Terre Rouge’s only California appellation Syrah is dusty, savory and reasonably light, approachable from beginning to end. On the finish, enjoy handfuls of peppery spice.
From the winery: "This is our entry level, St. Joseph-like Syrah. It is made from fruit grown at a superb vineyard site that is planted in the hills just west of the Amador County line, just a few miles from the Mokelumne River in Clements Hills (a new Lodi sub-appellation). Tight spacing, vertical trellising, and upward shoot positioning give the fruit maximum sun exposure to promote full flavor development. We find the wine is very forward and drinkable shortly after bottling making it a great everyday Syrah and perfect as a restaurant glass pour. This wine is exceedingly dark in color with rich, silky wild raspberry fruit flavors laced with pepper, tar, and herb tones. Aromas are raspberry, smoky, wild gamey, peppery, and cinnamon. The wine has a clean purity of Syrah fruit that is reminiscent of many Northern Rhône wines. It has full forward fruit, great acid balance and is very smooth and creamy in the mouth."