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2013 Cayuse - Syrah Wallah Wallah Special #5

UNITED STATES / WASHINGTON / WALLA WALLA
abv 13.4%
  • 96 WA
  • 91 WS
  • Variety
    Syrah

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SKU: 448089-2013
  • Rating: 96

    One of the most complete, layered and elegant 2013s from Cayuse is the 2013 Syrah Walla Walla Special #5, which is made from two separate parcels that remind Christophe of the northern Rhone's Jamet brother's Cote Rotie. He also keeps the price low as a thank you to his customers. Giving up classic cool climate notes of green olives, black cherries, scorched earth, ash and ripe herbs, this beauty hits the palate with full-bodied richness, no hard edges, incredibly fine tannin and a finish that just keeps going. I thoroughly enjoyed drinking it today, but it will be better with 4-5 years of cellaring and have two decades or more of overall longevity. Looking at these latest releases from Cayuse, the 2013s are surprisingly elegant and silky, with less overall concentration and depth than I expected after tasting them from barrel last year. They possess slightly lighter, translucent colors, moderate to good concentration and polished tannin. At times I was wishing for a touch more exuberance and texture. Nevertheless, these are silky, seamless, elegant wines that will be fun to follow over the coming decade or more. The 2014s also lean towards the more elegant, streamlined end of the spectrum, yet have another layer of texture and richness. They're a step up over the 2013s.
    Author: Jeb Dunnuck
  • Rating: 91

    Sleekly built and distinctive, with floral raspberry, crushed stone and bacon fat flavors that glide precisely toward refined tannins. Drink now through 2023. 533 cases made.
    Author: Tim Fish
  • Rating: 93

    (bottled in magnum): Healthy, moderately saturated dark red. Musky aromas of dark berries, mocha and brown spices, plus a hint of creamy vanilla. Savory and youthfully tight; offering less early sex appeal than the 2012 version but this wine possesses an impressive thickness and finishes with big, broad tannins that suggest a slow evolution in bottle. Distinctly saline and backward--and perhaps less distinctive today than the single-vineyard Syrah bottlings from Cayuse. This wine represents Baron's tribute to Jamet's CA'te-RA'tie, which is a blend of multiple sites. - Stephen Tanzer
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  • In a state most often associated with rain and apples, vineyards occupy more land each year. Nearly all of this vineyard expansion has taken place in the eastern part of the state, where arid, almost desert-like conditions prevail. Winters are harsh and frost is always a threat, but such conditions, along with sandy soils, have allowed most Washington vines to grow on their own rootstocks—a rarity among wine regions throughout the world. 

    Syrah is one of the darkest and thickest-skinned varieties, producing wines with intense color, flavors of blueberry, blackberry and boysenberry, and high tannin. Depending on the climate in which it is grown and the winemaking techniques used, Syrah (known as Shiraz in Australia) can come in a wide range of styles. Regardless of style, use of heavy oak is common and the highest quality wines are suitable for long-term ageing.

    The best Old-World Syrah comes from the Northern Rhône, where the variety is at its coolest limit for growth. Sites with south-facing slopes are exposed to more sun and produce the highest quality wines with medium body and flavors of berry, hints of pepper and mint, and notes of olive, bacon, meat, and leather with age. Côte-Rôtie and Hermitage are the most famous of these sites, and producers such as E. Guigal, Chave, and Domaine Paul Jaboulet Aîné make some of the world’s best wines from Syrah.

    In the New World, Australia is the most famous region for high-quality wines from Shiraz. The warm climates of Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale produce full-bodied, intensely fruity wines displaying notes of earth and spice and developing leather with age. A leaner, more peppery style is made in cooler regions with the best examples coming from Eden Valley. Australian producers such as Penfolds, Torbreck, and Henschke have garnered international recognition for making world-class wines from Shiraz.

    One cannot talk about New-World Syrah without recognizing the work of Californian producers, most notably Sine Qua Non, Colgin, and Alban, who have also gained international recognition for the quality of their wines from Syrah.

    The delicate flavors of cooler climate Syrah from the Northern Rhône and Sonoma make it an ideal pairing for dishes like lamb or eggplant. The bold flavors of warmer climate Shiraz from Australia pair well with barbeque pork and chicken, short ribs, and steak. 

    Collector Data For This Wine

    • 35 bottles owned
    • 27 collectors