Sunday, December 16, 2007

Review and Rating: **+ Brick Kiln Syrah, 2005, California

Review:
This California syrah is aged in French oak and vinted by Brick Kiln Cellars in Morgan Hill, California. It was purchased as part of the budget "Wine Insiders" series of wines. The "California" appellation suggests that fruit was sourced from various unspecified locations around the state.

In the glass, it is mid-red, somewhat transparent. Aromas do pour out from the glass. They are steeped in charred oak and medium-depth fruit. Remind me a bit of Starry Night.

On the palate, what you notice first is a fairly tannic blush in the mid-palate. That brings along some slightly charred cherry flavors and acids into the corners of your mouth. Overall, a moderate-weight, somewhat acid-based syrah. Likely it will go pretty well with food, though I am trying it alone now as a sipper. I'll give it a solid two stars, with a plus for the engaging aroma.

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May, 2008 - Trying again, with a few more months in bottle. At this stage, color and aromas notes are consistent. On the palate, there is a notable roundness to the attack, which now comes across as medium and plush with ripe red cherries. Nice, modest but lively finish. This would move me to three stars out of five. Feels like it may peak by 2009/10.

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