When it comes to California Syrah, our most memorable memories lie in Santa Barbara County. We know what we like and we know what flavors we are looking for in their Syrah. We can sit here all day and talk about our favorite Santa Barbara Syrah wine characteristics (blueberries, blackberries, anise, pepper, violets, meaty, etc.), but for us and our experiences…bottom-line…we know the wine just smells and tastes like Santa Barbara and we love it! And we’re sure it’s the same for millions of other wine drinkers who drink locally.
Last week while we were in San Diego, we stopped in a really great wine shop, The Wine Bank and picked up a 2010 Stolpman Santa Ynez Estate Syrah. Much to our surprise, the usual flavors we tend to look for in a S.B. Syrah were missing, maybe not missing, just completely different. We were intrigued. It really reminded us of wine that had many Old World characteristics: lighter bodied, earthy, mineral, herb and floral characteristics…generalizing “Old World” of course.
We found that Stephen Tanzer’s IWC description nailed it!
91 points “(a blend of this winery’s syrah blocks; includes 3% viognier): Good dark red. Aromas of blueberry, crushed black raspberry, brown spices, smoked meat, mocha and cocoa; smells like a northern Rhone wine from granite soil. Firm and energetic in the mouth, offering a nice balance of fresh dark fruits and smoky minerality. Bright acidity and a note of black pepper give the palate a zesty quality. Finishes lightly saline, juicy and persistent, with spicy tannins.”
You just can’t beat all of these amazing flavors for $25 bucks! We highly suggest trying to get your hands on a bottle of this 2010 Stolpman Syrah.
2010 Stolpman Estate Santa Yyez Syrah
Suggegested retail $25