2010 Saxum "Bone Rock - James Berry Vineyard" Paso Robles Syrah

SKU #1125549 99 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Coming from a steep, terraced plot of head-trained Syrah, the 2010 James Berry Vineyard Bone Rock (90% Syrah and 10% Roussanne) is easily the most structured, intense wine in the lineup. Sporting absolutely off-the-hook aromas of smoked meats, black fruits, liquid mineral, pepper, and cigar wrapper, it flows onto the palate with a thick, incredibly rich texture that somehow manages to stay light and fresh. A total behemoth, it needs time to fully flesh out, yet is up there with some of the most monumental young wines I’ve tasted. It should be forgotten for 3-4 years, and then consumed over the following two decades. (JD)  (7/2014)

97 points Vinous

 The 2010 Bone Rock is just as fabulous from bottle as it was from barrel. Layered, intensely fragrant and always changing in the glass, the 2010 flat-out stunning. Layers of dark varietal fruit continue to blossom as the wine shows off its pedigree. Even with all of its richness, the 2010 never comes across as overly heavy. Hints of jasmine and lavender add lift on the finish. The 2010 is 89% Syrah from head-trained vines in James Berry and 11% Roussanne. Justin Smith used 50% whole clusters on the Syrah components. Readers lucky enough to find the Bone Rock should not hesitate. It is superb. (Antonio Galloni)  (7/2013)

96 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Opaque ruby. A heady, alluringly perfumed bouquet displays scents of cherry compote, black raspberry, potpourri and incense. Deep, sweet and pliant, showing remarkably intense, concentrated red and blue fruit preserve flavors and a sexy floral pastille nuance. Shows superb clarity and energy on the gently tannic finish, which leaves sappy red fruit and floral notes behind.  (12/2012)

95 points Wine Spectator

 Built to cellar, this is intensely peppery, rich and vibrant, with dark berry, roasted herb and espresso. Gains depth and persistence through to the finish, revealing subtle flavor nuances that touch on tobacco, road tar and licorice. Best from 2014 through 2026.  (3/2013)

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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:

California

- 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:

Paso Robles

- Located about halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, this inland AVA enjoys a sunny and hot growing period while its seaside neighbors hang in the fog. Zinfandel is the traditional red grape of choice, though cabernet, chardonnay, and Rhône varietals are gaining favor. Most are made in a fruit-forward, early drinking style.