The 2007 Syrah Cumulus Vineyard is a meaty, earthy effort representing a hypothetical blend of a northern Rhone with the exuberant, unabashedly ripe, juicy fruit of California. Jus de viande, damp earth, black currant, and blackberry notes along with good minerality and an absence of oak are all present in this full-bodied Syrah. It still has some tannins to resolve, but it is a big, full-bodied, classic, promising debut effort from the Cumulus Vineyard. It should drink well for at least a decade. This is the debut release of the Ventura County home estate of Manfred Krankl’s vineyard, which is a separate entity from his Sine Qua Non wines. Composed of 92% Syrah, 6% Grenache, and 2% Roussanne, there are 125 cases of this cuvee, which is to be released in Spring, 2011. (RP)
The 2007 Next of Kyn - No. 1 is just beginning to show the first signs of aromatic nuance and complexity. Sweet red cherry, plum, rose petal, coffee, tobacco and earthy notes give the wine its distinctive aromatic signatures. At nearly ten years of age, the 2007 remains vibrant and full of life. Some of the baby fat has melted away, but there is enough depth and vibrancy to support at least another decade of exceptional drinking. Silky, creamy tannins add to the wine’s sheer appeal. This is a fabulous debut for Manfred and Elaine Krankl’s Next of Kyn project. In a word: sublime. This retrospective tasting provided a great opportunity to revisit the first seven releases of Manfred and Elaine Krankl’s Next of Kyn. As compelling as the Krankls’ Sine Qua Non wines are, I have always found Next of Kyn to be just as fascinating, especially in recent years. This vertical only served to reinforce that impression. (AG)
Glass-staining purple. Wild aromas of blackberry and boysenberry liqueur, smoked meat, licorice and Indian spices. Dense, large-scaled and sappy, with a lush texture to the flavors of candied dark berries, violet pastille and licorice. Deep and alluringly sweet, but a lively mineral quality adds vivacity and precision. A seriously structured but surprisingly lithe wine that finishes chewy and gently tannic, with a late note of bitter chocolate and superb length. (JR)
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