The fruit-forward 2005 Syrah Lauterbach is 100% Syrah with a dark ruby/purple color, beautiful density and ripeness, and sweet tannins in a velvety, up-front style. Some black raspberry as well as hints of lard and espresso roast are intermingled with the red and black fruits in this wine, which has a beautiful medium to full-bodied mouthfeel and a long finish. Drink it over the next 5-6 years. Exciting wines seem to emerge annually from Pax Mahle, a self-trained winemaker (and all the better for it), and owner Joe Donelan. The 2005s are just hitting the shelf, and there are some sensational ones for sure. (RP)
Inky violet. Lush and inviting, with ripe boysenberry and blackberry aromas and a bright mineral overlay. Broad and fleshy, with deep dark fruit flavors, soft tannins and a suggestion of black cardamom. As round and supple as this is, there's good structure and focus here, with a gentle lift of acidity on the finish adding energy. (ST)
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2013 Solomon Hills "Solomon Hills Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay (Previously $40)