Previously recommended, but no tasting note given. In a 12/2007 review with the same score: Syrah has done well in this climate, and the 2004 Syrah Eisele Vineyard is a more elegant, lighter-styled wine than I thought from tasting it last year. It is still well-delineated with a dark ruby/purple color, floral and blackberry notes, a subtle peppery touch and a hint of meat. The wine is pretty and does include a small percentage of Viognier in the blend (usually around 3-4%). Unfortunately, the production of this wine is only around 300-400 cases. One of California’s and the world’s great wine estates, Araujo continues to exhibit remarkable consistency and impeccably high quality. Little seems to change other than some minor tweaking with respect to viticulture and winemaking. The team of Bart and Daphne Araujo, their talented longtime winemaker, Francoise Peschon, and the globe-trotting oenologist, Michel Rolland, are to be commended on the extraordinary elegance of these wines. (RP) 94+
Saturated ruby-red. Captivating, varietally expressive aromas of dark berries, dark chocolate, violet and white pepper. Juicy, spicy and rather powerful, but with lovely balance and good floral lift to the flavors of berries, meat, spice and hot stones. Finishes with substantial chewy tannins and lingering sweetness. This shows a chocolatey ripeness, but its firm structure gives it a rather suave quality and prevents it from coming off as heavy. (ST)
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2013 Solomon Hills "Solomon Hills Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay (Previously $40)