2009 Cayuse "Cailloux Vineyard" Walla Walla Valley Syrah

SKU #1081945 97 points Jeb Dunnuck

 Showing better from bottle than barrel, the elegant and finesse driven 2009 Cayuse Syrah Cailloux Vineyard is heavenly stuff that is every bit as good as the ’08. Possessing brilliant aromas of frambois, crushed flowers, bacon fat, white pepper, and iron on the nose, this full-bodied, seamless ’09 has an incredible, light texture, perfect balance, and a classically structured, firm finish where the wine’s quality shows. Opening up in the glass and a truly spectacular Syrah, this should be given 2-3 years of bottle age, and then consumed over the following 15+ years.  (6/2012)

96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 A hot vintage that has the grapes harvested mid-September, the 2009 Syrah Cailloux Vineyard offers lots of pepper, dried herbs, white flowers and black and red raspberry fruit to go with a gorgeously ripe, layered, full-bodied style on the palate. Slightly closed at the moment, with lots of structure, give it a few years and enjoy bottles through 2029. (JD) 96+  (6/2015)

96 points Wine Spectator

 Polished, effortless and juicy, with blackberry, currant, black olive and tar flavors, beautifully balanced to rotate all its facets as the finish keeps spinning. Harmonious and expressive. Drink now through 2019. *Highly Recommended, Top 100 Wines of 2012* (HS)  (8/2012)

95 points Wine Enthusiast

 Always a standout, this is the only one of the Cayuse Syrahs that is co-fermented with Viognier. This explodes with flavors of blueberries, soy, earth, black tea, iodine, anise and salt, plus a hint of sassafras. Notes of herb and cured meat add further interest to this unique, captivating effort. (PG)  (3/2013)

94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good dark red. Aromas of raspberry, mocha, black olive and leather, plus a suggestion of apricot (from the 7% Viognier component, no doubt). Rich in the mouth and impressively bright for the vintage, with complex fruit and mineral flavors framed and lifted by pepper, floral and spice elements. Very complex, dry and long Syrah with superb fruit and grip. Christophe Baron told me that he did no leaf-pulling for Syrah and then carried out a very gentle extraction: 'like steeping tea.' (ST)  (11/2012)


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Price: $134.99

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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.
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.
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