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2010 Qupe Syrah Bien Nacido Hillside Estate Santa Maria Valley
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90 Points | Stephen Tanzer's IWC - November/December 2012

Ruby-red.  Pungent, high-pitched cherry and licorice scents pick up spiciness with air.  Suave, very deep red fruit preserve flavors are nicely supported by juicy acidity.  Dusty tannins come on late and carry through the long, focused finish.  This graceful, energetic syrah checks in at a relatively low 13.5% alcohol.

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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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Syrah

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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