2007 Wind Gap "Griffin's Lair" Sonoma Coast Syrah (Previously $45)

SKU #1079945 95 points Jeb Dunnuck

 Showing every bit the wine it was a year ago, the 2007 Wind Gap Wines Syrah Griffin's Lair is a spectacular Syrah that delivers gorgeous aromas of cassis, blackberries, smoked meats, and earthy, gamey characteristics on the nose. Thrilling on the palate as well, with a concentrated, layered mid-palate, a rich, mouth coating texture, and masses of ripe tannin, this beauty stays fresh and overall elegant with notable purity and precision. Still incredibly youthful, this should continue to evolve positively for 2-3 years, and drink well for 12-15 years.  (12/2011)

95 points Wine & Spirits

 Wind Gap is Pax Mahle's latest project, based on vineyards located at gaps in the coastal hills where inland heat draws the cool ocean air over the vines. Griffins Lair is in the Petaluma Wind Gap, a southwest-facing slope planted on coarse gravel and rock. The conditions restrain the young vines (02 was the first vintage), bypassing the clumsy vigor new plantings often express and creating a youthful brilliance instead. The structure is racy, opening up as the scent of the wine grows more compelling with each sip. It has the crush of black pepper intersecting with the saltiness of cured meat, or, more directly, the saltiness of coastal air. Enjoy this bottle over the course of several days to catch the evolution it may parallel in the cellar.  (2/2010)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Wild, pungent aromas of boysenberry, sassafras, potpourri and smoky Indian spices, with a strong mineral undertone. Sappy, sharply focused red and dark berry preserve flavors are weighty but show no excess fat, with silky tannins adding structure. The finish is refreshingly nervy and packs a serious punch, echoing the sweet dark berry and smoke notes strongly. This could only be Syrah. (ST)  (5/2010)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2007 Syrah Griffin’s Lair reveals abundant aromas of blackberries intermixed with hints of camphor, asphalt, roasted meats, herbs and black olives. This medium to full-bodied, rich, concentrated, moderately tannic Syrah is capable of lasting 10-15+ years. (RP)  (2/2011)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Complex flavors of blackberry, wild berry, cedar, spice and chicory are full-bodied and focused, with a minerally edge turning to tar and ending with chewy, gripping tannins that turn cedary as well. (JL)  (2/2010)


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By: Neal Fischer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/31/2019 | Send Email
This is quite a beautiful, aged Syrah. The nose boasts scents of dark flowers, white pepper, and dried red fruits. The pallet evolves this into fresh fig, dark plum, cherries, and elegant spice. The finish deepens in darkness and complexity with more fruit notes, earthiness, and cola flavors.

Additional Information:

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.
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.
Specific Appellation:

Sonoma County

- Second in fame only to Napa, this "other" valley offers just about every climate and topography imaginable. From its cool and fog-enshrouded coastal regions on the far west, to the sprawling Alexander Valley on the boarder of Napa and the many little dips and peaks in between, Sonoma has been a vital wine-grape-growing region since the mid 1800s. Important sub-AVAs include Chalk Hill (known for chardonnay and sauvignon blanc), Dry Creek Valley (where zin is king) Knights Valley (largely cabernet land), Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast (both celebrated pinot and chardonnay zones).