2007 Cayuse "Bionic Frog" Walla Walla Valley Syrah

SKU #1054699 98 points Wine Enthusiast

 Often considered the iconic Cayuse wine, this bears the cartoonish label with the leering frog, though it is a single-vineyard offering like the others. Initially showing some fat and sweetness, it is supple and textural, with the density that comes from a mix of flavors: pain grillé, smoke, umami, fungus, coffee grounds and dark fruits. A richly organic compendium of scents and flavors, with black tea tannins. (PG)  (2/2011)

95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The Cayuse 2007 Syrah Bionic Frog emphasizes sappy, bittersweet, dark berry and herbal concentrates on a palate whose plushness, viscosity, and fine grain of tannin resemble those of Cailloux from the same vintage tasted alongside. Brown spices, peat-like smokiness, and medicinal elements that straddle the borders of mineral, herbal and fruit character all lead to a superbly long, soothing finish that contrasts with the burst of enervating finishing energy in the corresponding Cailloux. (DS)  (12/2012)

95 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Knockout nose and palate combine blackberry, smoke, black olive, garrigue, spices and pepper. Dense, round and opulent in the mouth, with a spectacularly silky texture to the middle palate. Finishes with sophisticated dusty tannins and outstanding palate-saturating length. This wine's superb slow-mounting whiplash of perfume is something to experience. (ST)  (12/2010)

95 points Wine Spectator

 This has tremendous presence, graceful but forceful, playing out its flavors of plum, currant, black pepper and licorice against a background that hints at warm granite, cinnamon bark and bay leaf. Complex and harmonious. (HS)  (6/2010)

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Varietal:

Shiraz/Syrah

- 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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

Washington

- Washington has become one of the most important wine producing states in the United States, and development continues to grow rapidly. In 1969, when California was exploding as a wine producer, Washington had only two wineries, but by 2000 that number had passed 100. Most of Washington's grape crop goes to uses other than wine. Merlot and Chardonnay have been the most successful in Washington. It's interesting to note that Washington's prime wine regions are located at 46° north, along the same latitude as the legendary French wine districts of Bordeaux and Burgundy. During the summer, Washington averages more than two hours more sunlight each day compared to California.
Organic: