Blended with 3% Marsanne, the 2013 Syrah The Contender is still aging in 35% new French oak, some of which are larger puncheons. Showing the purity and focus of the vintage, it gives up lots of cassis, black raspberry, licorice and some meatiness to go with a full-bodied, elegant and fabulously textured feel on the palate. I'm not sure it matches the awesome 2012, but it's no lightweight and will certainly impress on release and over the following decade. Both 2012 and 2013 are great vintage for Matt Reynvaan, and this estate continues to produce thrillingly perfumed, complex and layered wines that compete with the best wines in Washington. They continue to produce more wines from the Foothills in the Sun vineyard, which is located just around the estate. The terroir here is relatively nondescript, yet the elevation is such that the grapes are right at the edge of perfect ripeness. All of the wines from this vineyard have cooler-climate, lively and complex characters, which is distinctly different from the classic Rocks expression found in their releases from the In The Rocks vineyard. I was slightly less impressed with the whites here, and they're shifted much more toward the fresher, more acid-driven style. Nevertheless, 2013 was difficult for the white. A cuvee readers need to check out is the new Cabernet, The Classic, which comes from their vineyard in the rocks. It's a killer bottle of wine.