I tasted two samples of the 2016 Syrah Alturas, one fermented with 100% whole clusters, and one with 50% whole clusters. Both were serious barrel samples possessing terrific notes of blackcurrants, cracked black peppercorns, meat and olives, full-bodied richness, solid density and ripe, yet certainly present, tannin. It’s loaded with potential, and is reminiscent of Côte Rôtie from the northern part of the appellation.
The 2016 Syrah Alturas is a wonderful wine, offering up a youthful but superb bouquet of violets, cracked pepper, grilled meat and crunchy cassis. On the palate, the wine is medium-bodied, concentrated and tensile, with fine-grained tannins, a deep core of crunchy fruit and a long, sapid finish. While this is already delicious, it's emphatically a young wine, and the real fireworks will begin when it has five years on the clock. Cropped at 1.25-tons per acre and fermented with 50% whole clusters, this lovely Syrah from Halcón wouldn't be out of place in a flight of great Cornas. It's also shockingly good value. (WK)
This wine, grown at 2,500-feet in elevation, is earthy, herbaceous and peppery, lively in texture and almost light in body. It’s not what most people are expecting in a Syrah, but takes an adventurous detour into an untamed realm of singed sage, wood smoke, black pepper and oolong tea that wakes up the senses. Light tannins and firm acidity make it lip smacking. (JG)
The 2016 Alturas (Syrah) is polished, refined and sensual, with lovely energy backing up the blueberry, mint, lavender and black pepper notes. Medium in body and gracious, the Alturas is an exquisite Syrah that has so much to offer. All the best elements of the house style come through nicely. I very much like the precision here. (AG)
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