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2009 Arnot-Roberts Syrah Alder Springs Vineyard Mendocino County
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94 Points | Stephen Tanzer's IWC - May/June 2011

Deep ruby.  A kaleidoscopic bouquet offers black raspberry, dried flowers, minerals, mocha and smoky minerals.  Fat and silky on entry, then more taut in the middle, with superb energy to its deep, almost decadently rich red and dark berry flavors.  Completely stains the palate without giving any impression of weight.  An element of pungent floral oils lingers on the long, sappy finish.  Walks a fine line of richness and finesse; Duncan says that "if New World syrah goes too far then it's just clown shoes." There's only 11.8% alcohol here!

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About California

It is remarkable that an industry essentially less than a half-century old could capture the attention of the American wine-buying public to the degree that California has. Powerful consumer interest in California wine is driven by two major factors. The more obvious reason is that California's best wines, which come from grapes grown in...

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While the grape is currently grown throughout the world, the most elegant Syrahs still come from the Northern Rhone valley, particularly the appellations of Côte Rôtie, Cornas, and Hermitage. Here, steep, terraced vineyards help produce full-bodied, intense, tannic wines loaded with white pepper and red fruit. In the vineyard, Syrah is largely cooperative- vines are productive, but not overly vigorous. Skins are thick, helping the grape...
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