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2011 Tensley "Colson Canyon" Syrah (96 points AG) $37.99 - 08/23/2013 - Syrah (domestic)

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2011 Tensley "Colson Canyon Vineyard" Santa Barbara County Syrah ($37.99)

96 points Vinous: "Black cherries meld into plums and spices, followed by hints of leather, rose petals, mint and licorice. A rich, layered Syrah, the 2011 Colson Canyon Vineyard is one of the most voluptuous wines in this range. With time in the glass, the 2011 continues to blossom nicely, providing some clues as to where the future lies. A distinctly layered, fruit-driven Syrah, the 2011 is flat-out dazzling. Colson Canyon sits above the fog line, making it the warmest site Tensley works with. Drinking window: 2014 - 2023. (AG)" (07/2013)

95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The only wine to see some new oak, the 2011 Colson Canyon Syrah is knockout stuff in this vintage! Meaty and complex, with plenty of dark berry fruit, olive, underbrush, violets, licorice and earth, it is full-bodied, deeply concentrated and has a textured, layered feel on the palate. Easily the best Colson Canyon Syrah Ive tasted from Joey, this knockout effort will have 10-12 years of longevity. Drink 2014-2023. (JD)" (08/2013)

90 points Wine Spectator: "Exhibits pure dark berry, raspberry and boysenberry flavors that sail along on the finish, ending with fine-grained tannins. Ripe and juicy." (12/2013)

K&L Notes: Joey Tensley's wines are "high end, super-duper wines from Rhone varietals," according to longtime fan Robert Parker, writing in the Wine Advocate, representing "some of the most intense expressions of Rhone varieties – Syrah in particular – in the Central Coast. The wines are aged for about 11 months on their lees, with an addition of SO2 just prior to bottling. Tensley uses around one-third whole clusters and mostly neutral oak, which allows the unique qualities of these sites to come through."