2009 Cayuse "En Cerise" Walla Walla Valley Syrah

SKU #1079247 96 points Wine Advocate

Outer quote mark Fermented in concrete, then aged in demi-muids, only around 20% of which were new, Baron’s 2009 Syrah En Cerise Vineyard incorporates a mouthwateringly savory alliance of smoke meat and soy sauce to its luxuriantly rich, silken-textured matrix of confitured cassis and cherry, further laced with salted caramel, while striking perfume of mint, gentian, cardamom, and rose wood hovers above the glass and inner-mouth. The finish here lingers with an uncanny combination of seductive caress, vibrancy, richness, and buoyancy, its many flavor strands–floral, fruited, animal, spice and mineral–dynamically intertwining. I would surely give at least some bottles of it 12-15 years’ opportunity to show their true potential. Cautious as I attempt to be in drawing such parallels, if Baron’s latest Cailloux bottling resembles Verset Cornas, then this En Cerise puts one in mind of another of his Rhone heroes and (albeit self-effacing) near-legends, Marius Gentaz of Côte Rotie, and in either instance Baron’s result measures up to that of these old masters. (DS) Inner quote mark (12/2012)

95 points Wine Spectator

Outer quote mark Rich, supple and opulent, this is generous with its blackberry, purple plum, black olive, tobacco and dusky spice flavors, remaining complex and harmonious through the long, balanced finish. (HS) Inner quote mark (8/2012)

93-95 points Jeb Dunnuck

Outer quote mark Sporting the most liquid rock profile of the ‘09s, the 2009 Cayuse Syrah En Cerise Vineyard has deep black cherry fruit, licorice and pepper notes riding atop a core of crushed rocks and minerals. The palate doesn’t lose a beat to the nose and showed a tight, structured profile, a nervous, energetic texture and a very long finish. Inner quote mark (5/2010)

94 points Int'l Wine Cellar

Outer quote mark Good medium ruby, brighter than the Cailloux. The nose offers superb lift for this warm vintage: black cherry, blackberry, cocoa powder and pink peppercorn, plus a suggestion of marshmallow. Lush and pliant but with a firm spine of acidity and underlying minerality energizing the sweet dark fruit and black olive flavors. A distinctly Rhone-like animal quality adds interest. At once rich and dry, with a building, tactile, palate-staining finish featuring a saline quality and strong black cherry flavor. At 14.2% alcohol, this has the lowest octane level of this set of 2009s but boasts outstanding flavor impact. (ST) 94+ Inner quote mark (11/2012)

94 points Wine Enthusiast

Outer quote mark Flavors of blackberry, black cherry and a streak of cola ignite the palate, with a layer of pure mineral underneath. At first a bit delicate, this never pauses, introducing umami and cinnamon highlights on the lingering finish. It’s fresh and elegant, with a more gentle fade than some of the more potent Syrahs from Cayuse. (PG) Inner quote mark (3/2013)

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Price: $129.99

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